Starting a family can be even more of a challenge without a partner or in a same sex couple. At Concept Fertility, we are committed to providing exemplary care and advice regardless of your sexual orientation or relationship status. Over the years, we have helped numerous single women and same sex couples to conceive and have children through IUI, IVF, the use of donor sperm, egg sharing, or simply by preserving fertility through egg freezing.
As with any medical treatment, it is important to have a good understanding of your options before taking action. We have a number of recommended paths available.
Intrauterine Insemination with Donor Sperm
The most popular option for single women or lesbian couples is IUI using donor sperm – this allows women to begin a pregnancy without a male partner. This is a relatively simple procedure that we recommend for younger women with no fertility or health issues – donor sperm is inserted into the uterus around the time of ovulation, and the proximity to the egg increases the chances of successful fertilisation. With this procedure, there is little or no need for ongoing hormonal treatments to otherwise boost fertility and increase the chances of success.
IVF with Donor Sperm or Donated Eggs
Women with underlying fertility issues or simply trying to conceive later in life may opt for IVF alongside choosing donor sperm. This is a more intensive process and is often chosen when women know about potential fertility problems but also has higher chances of success than IUI alone for women who are over 35 or have previously been unable to conceive. In a lesbian couple, it is often important to consider which partner has the best chances of a successful pregnancy either due to age or health factors, and decide on the fertility pathway from there. Again, donor sperm is available. For lesbian couples, whether considering IUI or IVF, both partners can be treated using the same sperm donor so that the resulting children can share the same genetic father.
This is something more and more people have been asking about, and doing, in the last few years. Whilst the ability to preserve fertility through freezing eggs is a wonderful medical innovation, careful consideration should be given before it is selected as a lifestyle choice, as no medical procedure can guarantee success. If you are not yet ready to start a family but would like to ensure that you have the best chances of success later on, egg freezing is an increasingly popular choice. This allows you to preserve a number of your eggs for when you have found a partner or simply when your life is in a place where you are happy and ready to have children. It is best to freeze your eggs before the age of 35 to 38 due to the health of your eggs after this point. For younger women who are worried, we recommend a fertility assessment so that information is available to make an informed choice. Then, for further help, implications counselling is available from an independent expert.
While these are the most popular choices, it is important to tailor your fertility options to your specific circumstances. If you would like to discuss your fertility options, please get in touch.
This post was written by Kamal Ojha