Unexplained infertility is defined as a type of infertility where the cause of infertility is inconclusive or not known. Almost 15% – 30% of couples who face difficulties in getting pregnant are diagnosed with unexplained infertility as their diagnostic results indicate normal ovarian reserve, tubal patency, absence of structural problems in the uterus and adequate sperm function.
Evaluation of Unexplained Infertility
Demonstration of at least one patent fallopian tube
Documentation of ovulation
Ovarian reserve test
Assessment of uterine factors
Advanced sperm function test
Treatments for Unexplained Infertility
Treating unexplained infertility requires individualized treatments. Factors like age of the woman, duration of infertility, previous fertility treatments and risks must be considered while developing a suitable treatment plan.
Intrauterine Insemination with Ovarian Stimulation
For couples where the age of the female partner is below 35 years, Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) with ovarian stimulation is the preferred first line of treatment. IVF is recommended if the couple is unable to conceive after 3 cycles of IUI with ovarian stimulation.
In Vitro Fertilisation
In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) is effective for couples unable to conceive with 3 stimulated IUI cycles and for women older than 35 years of age who are trying to become pregnant. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) can be recommended in the IVF cycle, especially in case of previous failed IVF treatments or if the male partner has mild to moderate male factor infertility. In some cases, IVF cycles may also offer insight into possible causes of unexplained infertility in the couple.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I become pregnant with Unexplained Infertility?
Couples with unexplained infertility can become pregnant successfully with the help of stimulated IUI cycles as well as IVF treatments. Sometimes, couples may also become pregnant without any treatment. However, as the ability to conceive can reduce with increasing maternal age (especially over the age of 35 years), consult a fertility specialist if you have not been able to conceive with regular timed intercourse.
Can IUI help in Unexplained Infertility?
IUI with ovarian stimulation is the preferred first line of treatment for unexplained infertility, especially for couples where the age of the female partner is below 35 years. In case pregnancy is not achieved even after 3 cycles of stimulated IUI, IVF with or without ICSI is recommended.
Which is better, IUI or IVF?
There are several factors that can affect the success of fertility treatments like age of the female partner, cause of infertility and duration of infertility. Depending on these factors, the suitability, and chances of success of both IUI and IVF will vary from couple to couple.