Recommended Testing Before Your New Patient Consultation
Initial Fertility Testing
Prior to your first consultation at Pacific NW Fertility, it may be helpful (although, not mandatory), to have some preliminary fertility testing completed and the results sent to us before your first appointment. This allows our physicians to consult with you in greater depth concerning your specific situation.
Your OB/GYN or primary care doctor can order these fertility tests if he/she feels they are appropriate. In general, fertility tests which are requested by your OB/GYN or primary care physician have a greater possibility of being covered by your insurance provider than fertility tests which are requested by fertility physicians.
The following information lists and explains these preliminary fertility tests.
FSH/E2 or Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Estrogen (E2)
These are hormones that predict a woman’s ovarian reserve. In the beginning of the menstrual cycle (cycle days 1-5), the pituitary gland in the brain secretes Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH). (Cycle day 1 is counted as the first day of actual flow). This hormone stimulates the ovaries to provide an egg for the cycle. When the ovary has received enough FSH to grow a dominant follicle, the follicle begins to release Estrogen. This estrogen indicates that a follicle is growing and alerts the brain to stop secreting FSH. FSH/E2 testing therefore measures the levels of FSH and Estradiol or estrogen in the blood on menstrual cycle day 2 or 3, providing an assessment of a woman’s ovarian reserve, or pregnancy potential.
A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is a test that is performed to see if there is a blockage or other abnormality of the fallopian tubes, which would prevent the sperm from reaching the egg. This test may also be used to detect irregularity or scarring of the lining of the uterus. For an HSG test, sometimes referred to as the “dye test,” dye is placed into the uterus and an X-ray is taken. The HSG test is performed in the 2nd week of the menstrual cycle (i.e. after menstrual bleeding has stopped but before ovulation), and must be performed in a radiology department.
Male Partner Testing
A semen analysis is the measurement of different properties of a single ejaculate, including:
Volume - amount of the ejaculate measured in ML
Count - concentration of sperm, measured in million of sperm per ML
Motility - percentage of sperm that are moving, i.e. living
Morphology - percentage of sperm that are normal in shape
If you are interested in making an appointment with Pacific NW Fertility, please call 206-515-0002 or connect through our online patient contact form.
My partner and I went to PNWF because of the positive stance they take on assisting the LGBT community build families. Our primary provider is wonderful. From the get-go, the doctor made us feel comfortable, she took the time to answer all of our questions, and it felt like we were friends talking about fertility treatment, not numbers on a chart. Our doctor, over the course of our treatment, really got to know our personalities too, which was great. I prefer scientific explanations and my partner prefers brief, "give me the short version" explanations. I mention this because the fact that she got to know us in that way really made us feel like she cared about us personally as well as the outcome of our treatment and our family.