If you have polycystic ovaries or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), you may find that you need help to get pregnant.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is a common cause of fertility problems in women. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re infertile. Typically, women with PCOS don’t ovulate regularly, and have an irregular menstrual cycle. Some women with PCOS don’t ovulate at all.
The good news is that if you have PCOS, there are fertility treatments to increase your chances of natural conception to help you get pregnant:
PCOS and Natural Conception
If you’re under 35, you may wish to try to conceive naturally before seeking fertility treatment for PCOS, but if you’re older we would always recommend you get help sooner rather than later, because your natural fertility is lower the older you are.
You can carefully monitor your cycle to pinpoint ovulation and this may be all that is needed to give you the best chance of natural conception. Make sure your weight is within a healthy BMI range, and use ovulation prediction kits to help identify within your irregular cycles when you are ovulating, so you can time intercourse for the highest chance of success.
PCOS and Fertility Treatment
There are different fertility treatments for PCOS, and the one that is recommended to you will be based upon your diagnosis and medical history. Treatments for PCOS require careful planning and a specific treatment protocol can be tailored to you and your predicted response to ovarian stimulation.
The first-line fertility treatment if you are not ovulating regularly is Induction of Ovulation. This is where we use specific fertility drugs to stimulate your ovaries to release a mature egg.
The aim of this treatment is not only to ensure you have a mature egg ready to be fertilised, but that your womb lining is also of the right thickness for any embryo to implant successfully.
Our expert team will ensure that you respond in the correct way to your fertility drugs, and also to minimise your risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS), which is when your ovaries overstimulate as a result of the fertility drugs and release too many mature eggs.
Ultrasound scans and blood tests will tell us when your eggs are ready to be released and you then either attempt to conceive naturally, or we may recommend Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), which is when your partner’s sperm is inserted directly into your uterus, to have easier access to the egg in the hope that fertilisation occurs.
Dependent upon your medical history or age, IVF may also be recommended to you, where your mature eggs are fertilised by your partner’s sperm in our laboratory, with the resulting embryo transferred back into your womb.
Your fertility consultant will always advise which treatment is most likely to work for you. We help many women with PCOS to successfully conceive, if you have any questions about how we can help you, our friendly Patient Advisors can be contacted on 0161 300 2730 or use our discreet Live Chat service, via our homepage during clinic hours