Reproductive Resource Center (RRC) had the great privilege of being a Presenting Sponsor of the 2011 Kansas City Infertility Awareness (KCIA) Conference last Saturday, April 30, 2011. The conference, held at North Kansas City Hospital, was without a doubt a HUGE success.
Hats off the four ladies who spearheaded and planned the conference from top to bottom: Allison Spencer, Tami Reinhard, Nicolle Hays and Meagan Stach. Because of their tireless work and dedication, over 200 attendees (men, women and couples!) spent 3 1/2 hours expanding their knowledge of infertility-related issues while meeting others and developing support networks.
Attendees were treated to three presentations by local physicians, and our Dr. Ryan Riggs gave a talk simply titled, “Infertility 101″. Guests also heard Licensed Professional Counselor Kerry Christifano speak about Stress and Infertility. Kerry has authored a blog post for us on this very topic– you can read it by clicking here.
Dr. Riggs made the point that a diagnosis of infertility should come after 1 year of trying – and failing- to conceive. Couples should seek care even earlier if any of the following apply:
- >35 years old
- Irregular Menstrual Cycles/periods
- Presence of Fibroids
- Presence of Endometriosis
- Recurrent pregnancy loss
Probably the most important thing he said regarding “how to get started” is that YOU are your own advocate. Take charge of and be responsible for your reproductive health!
He walked us through some common causes of infertility, and the topic of “eggs” seemed to garner the most questions. He specifically addressed Ovarian Resistance/Advanced Reproductive Age/Poor Oocyte (egg) Quality. Did you know that the most eggs a woman will ever have are present on the day of her birth?!? So you see, you have NO control over the quantity of your eggs. It is a well-established fact that egg quantity and quality diminish with advanced age. As a result, fertility rates decline as a function of age, as well.
As important as a female infertility workup is her male partner’s. An infertility workup should always include the following: Semen Analysis, Assessment of Ovulation, Egg Quality/Quantity (Ovarian Reserve) Testing, and Evaluation of Uterus, Tubes and Female Anatomy. Any abnormalities in these areas will lead to additional testing, which in turn influences the eventual course of treatment.
You may be wondering exactly how ovarian reserve is determined. Conventional measures include the following:
- Hormone Study
- Ultrasound Evaluation
During the second part of his talk, Dr. Riggs discussed Infertility Treatment Options. We’ll touch on that portion of his presentation in our next blog post! Again, congratulations to the KCIA group for putting on a superb conference. If you’d like to set up an appointment with Dr. Riggs or Dr. Celeste Brabec, please don’t hesitate to call us toll-free at 1-877-221-2323.