Birth Control Pills and Fertility Treatment

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Different types of birth control methods allow couples to minimize the possibility of an unplanned pregnancy. Birth control pills discourage conception in several ways, depending on the hormonal ingredients. Although fertility normally returns shortly after stopping the pill, some women may experience difficulty getting pregnant. In some instances, infertility treatments increase the chances of conception.


Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills have been around since the 1960s. Combination pills that include both estrogen and progestin are the most common variety of birth control pills. These pills help limit a female’s fertility by discouraging ovulation and creating a hostile environment for sperm. In addition to discouraging conception, birth control pills may also help reduce heavy menstrual bleeding, minimize menstrual pain, improve the symptoms of endometriosis and reduce the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.

Ovulation

Ovulation plays a major role in conception. Most fertile women experience ovulation once each month, about 10 to 14 days before the start of their next period. If sperm are present in your fallopian tubes at the time of ovulation, pregnancy may occur. Many women regain fertility within three to six months of stopping the pill. Ovulation may occur as early as two weeks after discontinuing this form of birth control.

Difficulty Conceiving

Infertility affects many couples and can be due to factors in both males and female. Hormonal problems, as well as disorders of the reproductive system, may lead to infertility in women. Possible causes include abnormalities of the cervix, autoimmune diseases and blocked fallopian tubes. Endometriosis may also cause infertility.

Infertility Testing

Determining the underlying cause of infertility is the first step in treating this disorder. In addition to a pelvic exam, your doctor may perform various other tests. Common infertility tests include blood and urine tests, ultrasound, laparoscopy and hysteroscopy.

Treatments

Your infertility treatment options vary, depending on the cause of your inability to conceive. You may require fertility medicines to help you ovulate. Fertility drugs include dopamine agonists, clomiphene citrate, gonadotropin and metformin. These medications encourage your ovaries to release eggs. In some instances, surgery may help correct physical abnormalities and open blocked fallopian tubes. Some couples may require assisted reproductive technology, such as in-vitro fertilization, surgical sperm aspiration or assisted hatching. Complications of infertility treatments include multiple fetuses, bleeding and infection.

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