Approximately 10% of all infertility cases are unexplained. Simply put, this means that there is no known physical or medical reason that conception has not happened. One of the possible reasons for unexplained infertility could be that your doctor has not performed all possible tests to discover the reason for the problem. Another possibility is that the problem is emotional and not physical or medical.
So, how do you know if your doctor has ordered the correct tests, at the correct times, and read the results of the tests correctly as well? Educate yourself. When it comes to scheduling tests, timing really is everything. Each test must be performed at different times during your cycle, and if the "window" is missed, even by one day, the results of the test will be incorrect.
One thing that I have noticed and learned is that many doctors don't realize how important a correctly functioning thyroid is to a woman's fertility. For the best chance to conceive, TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) levels should be between 1.0 and 2.0 mIU/L. Many, if not most, doctors and laboratories still consider a normal range between 0.5 and 5.0 mIU/L even though the AACE (American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists) have changed the accepted levels of TSH to between 0.3 and 3.04 mIU/L. If your doctor or lab is not following this new guideline, it is up to you to educate yourself and your doctor.
You can find a copy of the AACE press release with the new levels at www.aace.com/pub/press/releases/2003/index.php?r=20030118. Print out this page, and highlight the entire third paragraph. Now, read through the page and highlight each and every sentence that contains the word infertility. Take this page to your doctor, and express your concerns about the possibility that your unexplained infertility could in fact be a thyroid problem that is easily treated with proper medication. Be reasonable, but be firm. If your doctor is unwilling to read this report, it may be time to find a new doctor that is more willing to work with you and to listen to your concerns.
What happens if every test possible has not resulted in a reason for your infertility? Could it be an emotional problem? Stress, excessive stress that is, can affect your fertility, and receiving a diagnosis of unexplained infertility is going to cause additional stress. Depression can be another emotional result of receiving a diagnosis of unexplained infertility. Yet another emotional barrier that many women experience when they have not conceived is that they feel that they don't deserve to be a parent. Seeing infertility, whether it is explained or not, as a punishment for some wrongdoing could be the emotional barrier that is preventing conception in the first place.
There are several things that can be done to help resolve emotional barriers to conception. Hypnosis, couple therapy, meditation, and support groups can all help. I personally do not recommend individual therapy unless it includes scheduled couple therapy as well. By recognizing and dealing with emotional barriers, many of which will be hidden away in your subconscious mind, you may find your road to conception straighter and shorter.
Our minds are very powerful, and whether we decide consciously or subconsciously that we "cannot" be parents, should not be parents, or even if we are questioning our partner's ability to be a good parent, that emotional barrier could be only thing between you and a successful pregnancy.
Debbi Secaur has been researching, advising, and studying infertility causes and treatments for over 5 years now.
Debbi is the owner of two groups located on Yahoo that offer support and information to women and couples that are trying to conceive. She has developed and maintained TTC Dreams, a website for the groups since 1999, and continues to expand her knowledge and understanding of infertility.
Be sure to visit her free courses listed below.
- Introduction to Infertility
- Creating an Online Support Group
Originally published at Suite101.com