Frequently Asked Questions About Infertility

8 May 2014

What is infertility?

Infertility is a disease or condition of the reproductive system often diagnosed after a couple has had one year of unprotected, well-timed intercourse, or if the woman has suffered from multiple miscarriages and the woman is under 35 years of age. If the woman is over 35 years old, it is diagnosed after 6 months of unprotected, well-timed intercourse.

Who gets it?

Infertility is a medical problem. Approximately 30% of infertility is due to a female factor and 30% is due to a male factor, in the remainder either both couples are affected or the cause of the infertility cannot be explained.

What are the risk factors?



Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)

Tubal Disease


DES Exposure



What are the signs and symptoms?

Often there are no signs or symptoms associated with an infertility problem. Listening to your body and getting regular checkups will help to detect a problem. Early detection and treatment of a problem are often critical in achieving successful pregnancy outcomes later.

How is infertility treated?

Medical technology now offers more answers and treatment options to men and women trying to conceive a child. From hormonal treatments, ovulation induction and Intrauterine insemination to more advanced technologies like in vitro fertilization, ICSI to surrogacy, egg/sperm donation and even embryo donation. For more information on treatment of infertility please make an appointment with Coastal IVF Sunshine Coast.

What medications are used?

There are a variety of medications used to treat infertility. It is important to understand the medications and what their purpose is and to speak with the team at Coastal IVF about the medications that will be used in your specific treatment plan.

What is artificial insemination?

Artificial insemination is now more commonly referred to as IUI (intrauterine insemination). It is a procedure used for couples with unexplained infertility, minimal male factor infertility, and women with cervical mucus problems. The procedure uses the husband's or donor's sperm, washing and treating the sperm, and then injecting it into the woman’s uterus during the time of ovulation.

What is In Vitro or IVF?

In vitro is a latin term meaning in glass. In vitro fertilization (IVF) gets its name from the fact that fertilization occurs outside of the woman's body, in a lab originally in a glass dish, instead of a woman's fallopian tubes. Nowadays high quality plastic dishes and tubes are used instead. Typically, a woman will use ovulation stimulating drugs to produce an excess number of eggs. These eggs are surgically removed from the woman and fertilized in a dish with sperm. If fertilization takes place, Dr Stokes transfers the embryo(s) into the women's uterus.

How can I find an infertility specialist?

Typically you will have discussed your infertility issues with your GP. From there your GP will refer you to a infertility specialist such as Dr Stokes at Coastal IVF. You can ask to be referred to a specific clinic or take the recommendation of you GP.

If you have any questions or are unsure of how to proceed please call the team at Coastal IVF and we will endeavor to answer all your questions.