If you can’t get pregnant, you may want to start researching how to find the best fertility specialist or infertility doctor in your area. These tips will help if you’re looking for a new fertility doctor because you’re disappointed with the specialist you’ve already tried, or if you’re brand new to the infertility roller coaster and are wondering if you’ll ever get pregnant.
“You’ve been trying to conceive and it hasn’t happened. Maybe you’ve been aiming for pregnancy for six months, a year, or three years,” writes Pamela Madsen, the executive director of The American Fertility Association, in What to do When You Can’t Get Pregnant. “Maybe you’ve talked about it with your partner, your doctor, your friends. Maybe you haven’t. Maybe you’re gung-ho about getting help and your partner is foot-dragging. Maybe you’re reticent, nervous, or scared. Everyone’s situation is singular. But there is one universal imperative binding all of us…the search for understanding.”
You may not find all your answers here, in a fertility book, or from your infertility doctor…but at least you’re trying new things! For an overview of everything available for couples coping with infertility, click on What to do When You Can’t Get Pregnant. And read on for tips on finding a fertility specialist or infertility doctor…
How to Find a Fertility Specialist or Infertility Doctor
Ask around about fertility doctors or clinics. The best way to start a search for fertility doctors is to talk with friends who have had a good experience with someone. Infertility is still an embarrassing, “hush-hush” topic, but if you swallow your pride, you’ll dig up some invaluable and even fascinating information about getting pregnant! Talking to your friends, family members and colleagues could be one of the best ways to find a fertility specialist; for tips on talking about infertility, read Overcoming the Stigma of Infertility.
Ask for a referral to fertility specialist from a professional. Ask your family doctor, pastor, naturopathic physician, or even your massage therapist for referrals to a good fertility clinic. You don’t need a written prescription, just an informed suggestion. You can also contact the various state or provincial health associations for the names of infertility doctors or clinics.
Use the Yellow Pages or Google to search for the right fertility specialist. Many good fertility clinics advertise in the phone book or through their own website. Google “fertility specialists in (your city)” or “infertility doctors in (your state or province).” Some clinics may have websites that allow you to send a blind email so you can remain anonymous. Ask for specific information about whatever you’re dealing with (female infertility or male infertility).
Talk to several infertility doctors. Before you jump into the possible treatments at any fertility clinic, ask the fertility specialist questions such as: What is your training? How much experience do you have? What is your philosophy or therapeutic approach? What’s your success rate? A good fertility specialist will be happy to give you information about their education and experience. Write down your questions and answers before you go into your appointments. Make sure the fertility specialist has experience with your particular type of infertility. For more info, read Tips for Finding a Fertility Clinic.
Trust your gut when you’re talking to fertility specialists. If you’re not comfortable with or simply don’t like your fertility specialist, then walk away right away. If you’re unhappy with your fertility clinic at the beginning, don’t wait until several months have passed to find a new one. Coping with infertility is far too important to be treated likely, so don’t brush away your concerns or bad vibes! Trust your gut.
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Consider seeing a fertility counselor. When my husband and I embarked on the intrauterine insemination (IUI) stage of our fertility journey, we had to see a fertility counselor. It was a non-negotiable part of the process (but it cost extra!). I’m so glad we talked to her, because she really eased some fears and concerns we had – though she did raise new challenges! The most important thing she taught us is that infertility is not something that should be hidden. When something is kept a secret, it means it’s a bad thing – and infertility is not bad. So, as you’re searching for a fertility doctor, consider seeing a fertility counselor.