About Surrogacy

Understanding Secondary Infertility Treatment


Doctors use quite a few secondary infertility treatments to resolve this common diagnosis.

Generally, men and women can receive secondary infertility treatment that includes:

  • Medications
  • Surgery
  • Assisted reproductive technologies

If you’ve already tried secondary infertility treatment and have determined you’re ready to look into other family-building options, a surrogacy professional can provide information about surrogacy. But, if you want to learn more about the fertility treatments available, continue reading.

Secondary Infertility Treatment Options

Before we dive into the different ways doctors help men and women through secondary infertility treatment, we want to acknowledge how emotional this time likely is for you.

Getting a secondary infertility diagnosis can feel overwhelming and isolating. We want to tell you that you’re not alone and that there are infertility counselors and support groups that can help you.

Secondary Infertility Basics

Secondary infertility is when you’ve already had a child and have difficulty getting pregnant again. A diagnosis is made after a couple cannot conceive after repeated, consistent, unprotected sex for a year (if you’re younger than 35) or six months (if you’re older than 35).

Secondary Infertility Treatment for Women

Doctors may choose to provide secondary infertility treatment to women in one of three ways, or by combining these treatments.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Medications

The Cleveland Clinic details two main medications doctors can prescribe for secondary infertility treatment. These include:

  • Clomid (clomiphene): An oral drug that can increase a follicle-stimulating hormone.
  • Letrozole: An oral drug that lowers estrogen levels which can result in ovulation. It treats people who experience infertility because of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
  • Injectable medications: There also are injectable medications (including hCG, FSH, hMG, and GnRH) that can improve fertility.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Surgery

A doctor may decide to perform surgery to repair internal structural damage to reproductive organs. Surgeries can remove scar tissue, polyps, and fibroids from the uterus.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)

Doctors can use two types of ART to help women and their partners conceive. These include:

  • Intrauterine insemination (IUI): During this in-office procedure, your doctor will take your partner’s sperm (or donor sperm) and place it directly into your uterus during ovulation. This can increase your chances of conceiving.
  • In vitro fertilization (IVF): This in-office procedure is more invasive and expensive than IUI but is typically more effective. The process involves testing, egg retrieval, in-lab fertilization, and in-office embryo transfer.

Secondary Infertility Treatment for Men

The secondary infertility treatment options available to men are similar to the ones available to women. There are medications that could help, as well as surgical options to consider, if that is what your doctor recommends.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Medications

The following medications may help reverse infertility in men.

  • Clomid (clomiphene): Can increase hormones to reduce low testosterone, increase sperm count, and more
  • Arimidex (anastrozole): Can reduce “male hypoandrogenism” and improve sperm production
  • hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin): Stimulates testes to produce testosterone and improve sperm production

A doctor also may suggest certain antioxidants or anti-aging supplements that can help increase fertility.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Surgery

A doctor may suggest certain surgeries to fix structural issues (like testicular surgery to repair testicular varicocele) or retrieve sperm.

Treatment for Secondary Infertility with Assisted Reproductive Technology

In addition to having access to IUI and IVF, a doctor may try intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) to increase the chances of conception further.

Building Your Family Through Surrogacy

Deciding when it’s time to move on from secondary infertility treatment to another family-building option like surrogacy isn’t easy. But, surrogacy is a beautiful way to grow your family.

Even if you decide you aren’t ready to pursue surrogacy, a surrogacy professional can provide you with a list of infertility counselors and support groups that can provide an extra layer of guidance.

Working with a Surrogacy Agency

Every surrogacy involves surrogates, intended parents, and, frequently, a surrogacy agency.

Although you can find a surrogate on your own, surrogacy agencies provide immeasurable benefits to your surrogacy journey, like:

Exploring Secondary Infertility Treatments and Surrogacy

You and your partner can try many secondary infertility treatments with the assistance of a medical professional. But, if you try different secondary infertility treatments and want to try another family-building option like surrogacy, surrogacy professionals can help you begin your journey to parenthood.

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