Trying to Conceive: Worries Big and Small

WebMD Live Events Transcript

Does it seem like everyone but you got pregnant on the first try? Is something wrong, or will it just take time? We discussed what to worry about and what's no big deal with Amos Grunebaum, MD, medical director of the WebMD Fertility Center, on June 7, 2004.

The opinions expressed herein are the guests' alone and have not been reviewed by a WebMD physician. If you have questions about your health, you should consult your personal physician. This event is meant for informational purposes only.

MEMBER QUESTION:
For how long do sperms retain their fertilizing capability once deposited in women's tract? Is this different from their lifespan?

DR. AMOS:
Sperms usually die within minutes in the vagina. And most sperms die within one to two days inside the cervix and uterus. But a few sperms can survive for up to five days inside the uterus.

MEMBER QUESTION:
I am TTC since January 2004. I recently got pregnant but miscarried right away. I was wondering if it might be because my menses is usually two to three days of moderate bleeding? My cycles are regular, 29-30 days, and I ovulate regularly.

DR. AMOS:
Your cycles have little to do with a miscarriage. Most miscarriages are due to chromosome anomalies, and these have nothing to do with the cycle length.

MEMBER QUESTION:
I don't seem to ovulate until day 20-21 of my cycle and my period comes one week later. I am doing OPKs and charting BBT. I read that 11-17 days should elapse between when I ovulate and the first day of my period. This is a reason for infertility, correct?

DR. AMOS:
The corpus luteum phase is the time between ovulation and the next period. The CLP should be at least 12 days. If it's less than 12 days then you have difficulties getting pregnant. You should see your doctor and find out whether and how you should get treated.

MEMBER QUESTION:
So is it not a concern that my menses are only two to three days?

DR. AMOS:
A short menstrual period is usually not a major concern. What is important is that you ovulate regularly and have a normal luteal phase.

MEMBER QUESTION:
How soon after a miscarriage can you begin trying to conceive again?

DR. AMOS:
Ovulation can happen as early as two weeks after a miscarriage, and usually happens two to six weeks after a miscarriage. Most doctors usually suggest waiting for at least one period before starting to try getting pregnant again.

MEMBER QUESTION:
We have been trying since January 2004 with no luck. I had two periods in February. The first one was at 28 days and the second was at 25 days. The next one was at 28 days. Then in April it came on day 30. In May it was on day 37. I am very confused because I have never been this irregular before. I had one live birth 10 years ago and two miscarriages in 2000 and 2001. During the month of May I had several symptoms of pregnancy and then my period was very light and spotty for three days only. I'm not sure if it was really a period. Home test was negative two times. Help!

DR. AMOS:
Irregular periods are usually a sign of an ovulation problem. You can check your ovulation by doing a basal body temperature chart. The chart will help you identify when and if you ovulate, and within a couple of cycles you should find out if this is a problem needing treatment. You can chart your temperature at the WebMD Fertility Center.

"A menstrual period is usually a reflection of ovulation, so it all revolves around ovulation. If there is no period and no pregnancy then it's likely because there was no ovulation."


MEMBER QUESTION:
Will taking the drug prometrium stop me from getting pregnant? I have been taking it for three months.

DR. AMOS:
Prometrium is not a contraceptive medication. After you stop taking it then its effect on your body is gone and it won't influence your future fertility.

MEMBER QUESTION:
What is the purpose of taking prometrium? I was put on it for irregular periods. Is it supposed to help regulate my periods?

DR. AMOS:
Prometrium induces bleeding; it does not "regulate" your period. Regular periods come from ovulating regularly. Prometrium has no effect on your periods. If you have irregular periods and you want to get pregnant, you first must start ovulating regularly in order to improve your chances of getting pregnant.

MEMBER QUESTION:
We are not trying to get pregnant yet, but we are really close. Our finances are just coming around and we're finally getting to a place where I think we're comfortable starting. I am 28 and my wife is 21 but last month she skipped her period and it scares her. She has a little more college to go till she graduates but her family history for trouble getting pregnant has us worried. If we wait as planned and start next spring are we asking for trouble in getting pregnant?

DR. AMOS:
A menstrual period is usually a reflection of ovulation, so it all revolves around ovulation. If there is no period and no pregnancy then it's likely because there was no ovulation. You may want to start checking when and if ovulation happens. Once you have this information you will know if this affects your fertility.

MEMBER QUESTION:
What's the procedure called when a urologist has to put a tube up your urethra and scrape because of urinary retention, and is it a "normal" operation? I ask this because I have to have this done on Friday. Should I be concerned? I am a male, age 32. Will it have any effect on fertility in the future?

DR. AMOS:
I am not a urologist, and it's not clear what kind of a procedure this is. You may want to ask your urologist who did this procedure and knows exactly what was done whether it may impair your fertility.




STAY INFORMED

Get the Latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!