Treating Infertility

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Change in Thinking Since the Early 1980s

Much has changed since I wrote the first edition of How to Get Pregnant more than twenty-five years ago. We know now that it is a complete waste of time and money for the man to have surgery for varicocele or for the woman to endure a year of Lupron therapy to shrink her endometriosis. We know that treatment of the husband with Clomid or Pergonal and various other drugs will do nothing to increase his sperm count. We understand now more fully just how people do and don’t get pregnant, and what is the best strategy for overcoming infertility.


A woman does not have to waste her few valuable remaining years of potential fertility testing her mucus and wondering whether she’s having sex at the right time. Tammy, who got pregnant easily as a teenager and now in her late thirties is happily married and wants a child, does not have to go through unnecessary surgery for endometriosis. We can avoid the emotional drain of literally years of fruitless testing and slingshot-style therapy.

Very often, by the time a couple has gone through years and years of wasted, inappropriate infertility treatments, they’re worn out, their funds are absolutely exhausted, and they can’t even consider IVF, which would have been so much more likely to have helped them. Cynthia is a 32 year-old woman whose husband underwent two varicocelectomies and who herself was treated for infertility for ten years with Clomid, artificial insemination, several laparoscopies, and several operations to “lyse her adhesions,” despite the fact that the cause of her infertility all these years had been completely idiopathic (that means we just don’t know the cause). Although she would have a 60 percent chance for pregnancy with each treatment attempt with IVF, she is just too tired, frustrated, and emotionally depressed to go any further. Couples need the understanding and confidence to know whether they can safely temporize, or whether technology like IVF is more appropriate for them to utilize now, before they have exhausted their emotions, time, and resources.