As a woman, you decide to see an expert at a fertility or IVF centre in Bangalore or your locality when your own effort for your pregnancy plan does not work for you. As per your decision, you book an infertility appointment and you are getting ready to be at the clinic or hospital. In the meantime, you have numerous queries about your first appointment with a fertility specialist.
There is nothing new about this appointment. Like other visits to doctors for health issues, it is a little different. At the clinic or a doctor’s office, you will have to answer to some personal points like your periods, sexual intercourse, your overall health, family medical history, and physical examination of your private parts. For your support, here are some questions that you expect your doctor would ask from you:
How long have you been trying to conceive?
The doctor asks this to know the time since when you have been trying to get pregnant. Usually, you should try for a year before consulting a doctor if you are under 35. In the case of being above 35, you should try for 6 months. The time you disclose helps the doctor to determine whether you have fertility problems or not.
Have you ever noted down your basal body temperature?
Your doctor asks it to know whether you are ovulating regularly or not. If you have not monitored your basal body temperature, you will be asked to do so.
Have you faced fertility problems earlier?
It is crucial for your doctor what you have tried earlier. You need to disclose both – what was unsuccessful and what you are trying – to your doctor. Share your previous medical history with your doctor.
What was the time when you had your first period?
Disclosing it – menstruation started before or after 18 – can help your doctor know whether you have hormonal imbalances or a reproductive health disorder.
How long does your menstrual cycle last?
It helps your doctor know whether you have a longer, normal, or shorter menstrual cycle. You can calculate it from the first day of one period to the beginning of the next.
Is your menstrual cycle regular or irregular?
By disclosing it, you help your doctor to know whether you are having ovulation regularly or not. An irregular menstrual cycle can indicate a thyroid, prolactin, or ovary problem. It can also indicate menopause if you are around 40.
Do you have light or heavy periods? Do you have spotting between periods or any unexplained bleeding?
Normally, bleeding varies from one menstrual cycle to another. However, unexplained bleeding is a matter of concern. Revealing it to your doctor can help him/her know whether you may have an ovulation problem or not.
Do you experience cramping or pelvic pain during menstruation?
Having pelvic pain or cramping during menstruation is normal. However, severe pain or cramping may indicate pelvic adhesions or endometriosis.
Have you ever felt heaviness in your pelvis or diagnosed with endometriosis?
The doctor asks whether you have fibroids and endometriosis or not. These conditions cause fertility problems in females.
Have you had polycystic ovarian syndrome or pelvic/abdominal surgery?
Your doctor asks this as PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) links to ovulation disorder and pelvic/abdominal surgery may cause fertility issues.
Do you have a history of abnormal Pap smear?
The doctor asks it as it links to diagnostic procedures such as biopsies and cryotherapy that can influence your cervical mucus.
Apart from the above, your doctor asks you questions on tubal ligation, chronic diseases such as thyroid, ongoing medication, previous pregnancy complications, and prior miscarriages. Further, you may counter questions on your sexual history such as pain during sex, STIs, spotting after physical intimacy, and the use of lubricants prior to or during sexual intercourse.
You can face questions about your family medical history and lifestyle. The questions could be on a number of family members with fertility problems, family members with early menopause, smoking, drinking, caffeine intake, recreational drugs, and physical activities. You should disclose every respective thing clearly to get maximum benefits on your first meeting with a fertility doctor.
In the end, the doctor will encourage you to ask your queries that could be the cause of your issue, treatment options, side effects of the possible treatment, etc. You should ask as many questions as you can to educate yourself. And you can expect a physical examination and recommendation for a few tests or screenings.
An infertility appointment is almost similar to other appointments with respective doctors. It focuses more on your reproductive health. And you need to answer the questions of the doctor you have not done before. It is, as most questions link to your menstrual cycle, periods, sexual intercourse, etc. For better results, you should be honest and answer all the questions well.