Medical professionals have the technology to collect information on what seems to be anything. We are accustomed to receiving reasons, explanations or at least a guess at what could be causing our medical issues.
When it comes to infertility, doctors can do thorough examinations and identify specific reproductive barriers with the results. Typical infertility testing involves medical histories, physical exams, semen analysis, hormone screenings, intrauterine ultrasounds and cervical mucus tests. For some, this testing yields answers and solutions; for others, it yields nothing.
Approximately one in five couples struggling with infertility receive a diagnosis called “unexplained infertility.”
Unexplained infertility is generally defined as the lack of a clear cause for being unable to achieve pregnancy. The diagnosis is typically given after standard tests are completed.
There are a variety of cases and a million different scenarios. Some couples have had children without difficulty before, and then suddenly can’t get pregnant when they try again. Others are attempting for the first time or have been attempting for years without success.
Regardless, the frustration that accompanies this unclear diagnosis is warranted. Searching for elusive medical explanations is consuming and exhausting. The doctor’s appointments, the tests, the questions from concerned family members and friends—they all take a serious emotional toll.
“The hardest part is that we are still so young. I’m only 22, and my husband is 29. I don’t understand what the problem could be. I’ve gone over every little thing … We already have one child, and I got pregnant with her no problem at all!” The words of this BabyCenter member describe the bafflement and frustration many couples experience.
Lacking answers can leave one stuck in a state of limbo; not sure whether to keep trying or start considering other options.
Many organizations offer mental and emotional support for those dealing with difficult infertility diagnoses. One such example is the organization RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, which connects people struggling with similar infertility issues and offers resources and support for those who reach out.
While it’s clear that unexplained infertility is not an easy diagnosis, there is a bright side to be considered. In a podcast interview, Dr. Allison Rodgers of the Fertility Centers of Illinois discusses why an unexplained diagnosis can actually be viewed as favorable.
“People think an unexplained infertility diagnosis is bad, but I really try to let my patients know it’s a good thing.” Rodgers brings up a great point. “Most people want us to find something so that we can fix it. The problem is, that sometimes the things we find are not fixable. So, it’s really a good prognosis when we don’t find anything. It really gives you a good chance at moving forward and being successful when there is nothing we can find.”
Basically, a lack of answers leaves an open window. It’s better than finding something seriously wrong, and it rules out some of the typical causes of infertility.
For those faced with unexplained infertility, finding support and exploring new options are two ways to cope. Because this diagnosis does not rule out all prospects of gestation, embryo adoption is one possibility to consider.
The National Registry for Adoption (NRFA) is an organization that connects embryo donors with adoptive families. They understand the difficulties of infertility—both emotionally and financially—and work alongside people as they strive to find what’s right for them.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you to take your next steps. If you’ve been diagnosed with unexplained infertility, don’t be hesitant to reach out for support, explore your options and start building the future you have imagined.
Mackenzie Martin is a content writer who loves to see her client’s Google search rankings grow. As a writer by day and an author by night, she has an undying love for well-crafted copy and the impact it can have. Connect with her via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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