1 in 6 couples in the UK experience some problems in achieving a pregnancy naturally. At our Fertility Clinic, you will see a consultant gynaecologist who specialises in providing Fertility care.
Age is the most important factor governing female fertility and the success of fertility treatment. All women are born with a fixed number of eggs in the ovaries at birth - the female body makes no new eggs after birth. As the quantity and quality of eggs declines with time, women will find it harder to conceive naturally, and unfortunately the risk of miscarriage will also increase with age.
Amongst women aged under 30, 8 in 10 (80%) will conceive naturally after one year of trying, with the success rate increasing to 90% after 18 months of trying. As a result of this, many women will talk to their GP if they have not become pregnant after 12 to 18 months of trying. All GPs have regional and national guidelines that set out what the first level investigations should be for the couple, and also when to refer the couple on for more specialist treatment.
There are some situations that will need an earlier referral for specialist care, such as when a woman is over 35 OR if she has a significant past medical history such as pelvic infection, endometriosis or irregular/infrequent periods. Likewise, men with certain types of significant past medical history such as surgery/injury to the testes, cancer treatment, diabetes should see their GP. The GP will be able to refer them for investigations, which will include semen analysis.
The most common clinical causes of delayed conception (infertility) are:
About one-third of physical causes are found in women, one-third in men; whilst one-fifth of the time in both men and women. Unfortunately, this means that in about one-fifth of the cases, no specific reasons can be identified.
Recent research has shown that delaying trying to start a family and also unhealthy lifestyles are significant contributing factors that affect a couple’s prospects of having a family. Being overweight (especially those with large waist measurement - over 94cm/37 inches for men; 80cm/31.5 inches for women), not taking enough exercise, smoking, drinking too much alcohol, and use of recreational drugs or anabolic steroids are well recognised factors affecting both male and female fertility.
Weight is a serious issue in the UK today, with nearly one third of women in the UK age between 20 and 50 are classified as obese with BMI over 30kg/m2. It has been known for many years that obese pregnant women have much higher risks of have problems once they are pregnant and also having a poorer pregnancy outcome compared with normal weight pregnant women, including the following.
Sadly the same risks mentioned above will also increase risk of stillbirth and so national guidelines on pre-pregnancy and pregnancy weight management have been written to help women know what changes can help to improve pregnancy outcomes. Overweight women with polycystic ovary syndrome can find it particularly hard to lose weight.
At the other end of the scale, women who go into a pregnancy underweight (BMI less than 18.5 kg/m2) can be at higher risk of premature delivery and/or having a small baby, so getting to a healthy body weight is an incredibly important step when planning a pregnancy.
There is a lot of evidence that infertility can have a very negative effect on mental well-being. While the couples perhaps understandably focus on the physical causes of infertility, its psychological impact is often overlooked, which can include anxiety and depression. Although research suggests that a higher proportion of women than men say that struggling to start a family is the worst experience in their life, the reality of infertility is hard on both men and women. It can lead to low self-esteem and a sense of having no control in the face of such uncertainty. Some people experience isolation because they feel a need to avoiding social interaction with friends and family members who are pregnant or have children, and in some cases this can also lead to anxiety-related sexual dysfunction and marital disharmony.
These are complex problems for couples experiencing delayed conception and require a holistic (whole person) approach in order to improve both physical and emotional well-being, while attempting to achieve the ultimate goal of a successful pregnancy, with or without fertility treatment.
The Fertility Assessment Clinic is a Fertility Consultant-led service that offers a holistic approach for those experiencing delayed conception.
This will include some investigations and tests which can tell you what your fertility potential is in relation to your age, and whilst we cannot predict when or whether you will conceive naturally, where there are no obvious barriers to conceiving naturally found, we can offer you that reassurance. If the tests suggest there may be a problem, we can discuss further appropriate investigations/treatment with you.
Where there are lifestyle changes that will greatly improve your chances of conceiving naturally, we can discuss these with you and provide some tailored advice from a specialist dietitian, to give you every chance of taking control of your fertility journey.
At the clinic, you will see a consultant gynaecologist who specialises in providing Fertility care. The doctor will discuss your medical history with you and will also carry out the following:
We will generally review patients three weeks after their first appointment, depending on what type of tests being initiated in the first consultation. At the review appointment, we provide feedback on test results and discuss what these will mean going forward. We would also give couples advice on what if any further investigations would be needed and also their best course of action in terms of fertility treatments which may be appropriate.
"I had surgery here at the weekend and I can't recommend this place highly enough. They took great care of me and kept me at ease throughout my stay. The staff were brilliant, really friendly and chatted away and the food was top class. This hospital was better than any hotel I wonder could I book a weekend away in it when I fully recover?" Mr McGinnity, Kingsbridge Patient
"EXCELLENT - Had surgery today under the very caring Dr Stewart and her team. I cannot thank her enough for all she’s done for me over the past few months. Everything was explained to me in detail and all my care was considerate, professional and compassionate. Everyone I’ve met today has been beyond kind from Will the Anaesthetist, the Nurses and theatre staff, the catering staff - there has been no exception. Thank you all for taking care of me so well today - look forward to getting home tomorrow x" Mrs McAleavey, Kingsbridge Patient
"Hospital spotless and clean. Staff were so caring couldn’t do enough for me and made sure I was comfortable. Give the place 10 out of 10. Had surgery yesterday and treatment was first class" Ms Demirtas, Kingsbridge Patient
"Their service was excellent and convenient location!" Ms Kneale, Kingsbridge Patient
"Just received surgery at this hospital and I couldn't have been made to feel any more comfortable from the minute I stepped in until the minute I left. All the staff are wonderful and so friendly I will highly recommend this hospital to everyone" Ms McGivern, Kingsbridge Patient
"Had eye surgery here twice for cataracts and lens replacement. Super smooth service from start to finish. Very happy" Ms Jones, Kingsbridge Patient
"As hospitals go this one is pretty amazing! Had surgery with Mr Molloy at the end of October and have another one the end of this month. Mr Molloy is a gentleman who puts you at ease right away and ensured my last procedure went smoothly! From start to finish all the hospital staff go above and beyond to make your stay as comfortable and stress free as possible. The facilities are brilliant with the rooms spacious and modern to recover in. Keep up the good work!" Ms Roulston, Kingsbridge Patient
"My mother had a total hip replacement surgery. We stayed for three days and were discharged today. Honestly, words can't describe the quality of the job and care they do. The doctors Roger Wilson, Sherman, David, the nurses Susan, Sinead, Siobhan, Andrea, the catering staff who provided customised halal food, and the remaining team whose names I cannot remember were the kindest, nicest, politest, the most caring, professional and pleasant people we have ever come across in healthcare environment. These are true gems and real stars. We are indebted to their treatment.
They are 7 star people. We love you!" Mr Yourish, Kingsbridge Patient
"Great friendly staff the nurses go way and beyond. The hospital is spotless, and the service is second to none." Ms Croke, Kingsbridge Patient
"Currently just back from recovery on the ward. I have just had ACL reconstructive surgery on my left knee. What can I say? This place is brilliant. I arrived at 8.35am, taken to the ward at 8.45am (my admission time was 9am). Tended to by a lovely Nurse. Dr Roger Wilson spoke to me around 9.45am, in Theatre for 10am, recovery for 11.10am and now currently back on ward. These guys are awesome. From the consultant to anaesthetist to nurses to cater assistants. Absolutely brilliant. Thank you so much. I am so grateful to everyone at Kingsbridge for the service." Mr McNicholl, Kingsbridge Patient
"I just had a total hip replacement done by Mr Molloy. He made me feel totally at ease (a real gentleman). I had 1st class treatment and as for the staff they couldn’t do enough for me. My experience was excellent from the time I arrived until the day I left for home. Thanks a million to all involved." Miss Bennett, Kingsbridge Patient
"Excellent experience with Kingsbridge Hospital, my dad had a day procedure here recently and not only did he receive fantastic care, but so did myself and my mum. The staff were so understanding and without saying anything could see I was looking after my mum also who has dementia, they went above and beyond to make the time spent waiting on my Dad as pleasant and stress free as possible, I will never forget the extra mile they went to, to support us. Many thanks x" Ms Forde, Kingsbridge Patient
"I have just been discharged from Kingsbridge today after surgery and was in for 3 days. From start to finish my experience was excellent. From catering staff up to senior nurses and doctors they were all fantastic and made my stay a positive experience. As a nurse myself I probably have high expectations of care and I certainly experienced the best of care in Kingsbridge who have staff they should be proud off. Great teamwork." Ms Armstrong, Kingsbridge Patient
"I recently had my gall bladder removed. All of the staff I had to deal with were excellent and professional. It was the best treatment I have ever received." Ms Burrows, Kingsbridge Patient
"I got my tonsils out yesterday, all the staff were so pleasant and nothing was too much for them. I really did receive one to one care. They just had so much time for me. The food was lovely and the staff from the kitchen where first class. Glad I received my surgery here." Miss Wright, Kingsbridge Patient
"The service and staff are first class. Had my cataract operation done on the 20th of January and I would like to thank all the staff of this fantastic hospital for giving me my life back. You are all a credit to your profession. Excellent service and I would highly recommend you. Once again thank you so much and I am truly grateful to you all." Mr Doolan, Kingsbridge Patient
"Amazing 5-star hospital. Have had other surgery here before on my back.
Yesterday's was a neck disc replacement operation. I would highly recommend this hospital like a hotel manner. Thanks again guys." Mr Phillips, Kingsbridge Patient
"I recently got an MRI scan at Kingsbridge and was very impressed with how simple the process was and how little time I had to wait. The staff were friendly, and it was an all-round pleasant experience." Mr Sharkey, Kingsbridge Patient
"Can’t praise Kingsbridge Private Hospital enough!! I had an operation a couple of weeks ago and I was so well looked after. My surgeon Mr Rashid was fantastic, and the nursing staff was also fabulous. I found they communicated very well to each other, so everyone knew when my meds were due, my allergies etc. They were so kind, so lovely, constantly checked to see how I was i.e. my temperature etc. The food was fabulous and the catering staff very helpful having had an operation were very happy to accommodate ... Thank you to all!" Ms Cheong, Kingsbridge Patient
"Staff very friendly and very efficient. Surgeon and surgery top class. Big thanks to the Nurses for all their care and patience" Mr Howard, Kingsbridge Patient
"I was in your facility yesterday for a day procedure (operation on my left arm). I wanted to write and express how impressed I was with the facilities and more importantly the staff on the Ward.
Everyone was excellent, and I mean excellent, i don't normally write congratulatory e-mails so this is high praise in my view. The Senior nurse was excellent, as was the Theatre nurse and the anaesthetist. Even the assistants that helped with catering and other duties. All came together to form a great impression of the establishment." Jason Carpal Tunnel Surgery, Kingsbridge Patient