Q: What standard tests can you expect at your first visit to an infertility clinic?

A: According to Dr. Virginia Mensah, a reproductive endocrinologist with the Reproductive Science Center of New Jersey, couples can expect a number of standard testing which may vary by location or center, however most centers use very similar tests. Testing for the female patient typically includes hormonal testing and a uterine evaluation. The hormonal testing involves bloodwork and allows for evaluation of ovarian reserve (AMH, FSH, estradiol). It also often includes other preconception screening such as Rubella/Varicella and other viral or pathogen testing and thyroid studies. This testing is typically done shortly after the start of menses around day 3 of the menstrual cycle. As for uterine imaging, there are a variety of tests available including hysterosalpingogram (HSG) and FemVue, which are X-ray and Ultrasound tests respectively that allow for direct visualization of polyps or fibroids within the uterus and can confirm that the fallopian tubes are open. For the male partner, testing typically begins with a semen analysis to evaluate the sperm quality.

For more information on this topic, listen to the Creating a Family radio show Understanding Standard Infertility.

Image Credit: Nikki