A transvaginal ultrasound provides helpful information about a patient’s fertility
The Indianapolis fertility doctors at our clinic use a transvaginal ultrasound when evaluating the shape and size of a patient’s uterus, her uterine lining and whether she has any uterine abnormalities like fibroids or polyps. Our doctors can also use this type of fertility exam to assess the patient’s ovaries and determine her antral follicle count. This count is an estimate of the number of eggs that the woman still has in her ovaries.
A transvaginal ultrasound is a common fertility exam that doctors use during a patient’s initial fertility testing. This ultrasound also allows doctors to monitor the growth of follicles and the uterine lining in patients taking fertility medications.
What can you expect from a transvaginal ultrasound?
An ultrasound is typically one of the first exams our Indianapolis fertility doctors recommend when a patient seeks fertility care at our clinic. The results of the ultrasound tell our team whether the patient needs more testing or is ready to move forward with treatments.
This fertility exam involves a series of simple steps.
- When evaluating a patient’s antral follicle count, the doctor will schedule the ultrasound at the beginning of the woman’s menstrual cycle.
- To prepare for the ultrasound, the patient undresses from the waist down in an exam room. They will have a sheet for coverage.
- To perform the ultrasound, the fertility specialist or ultrasound technician covers the ultrasound transducer, or probe, with a lubricated sheath. They then slowly insert the tip of the transducer two to three inches into the vagina.
Once the ultrasound probe is in place, the transducer begins transmitting images to a screen. Ultrasound utilizes sound waves to generate an image of whatever part of the body the specialist is assessing. The specialist will likely make subtle shifts in the transducer to gain a better view of the reproductive organs. Most patients experience no discomfort during this fertility exam.
After the transvaginal ultrasound, the doctor reviews the results and discusses next steps with the patient.
Other fertility evaluations the doctor might recommend
There are additional tests the doctor may recommend in addition to the ultrasound. These tests help to ensure the doctor gets a comprehensive view of the patient’s fertility.
Blood test. Bloodwork can reveal important information about a patient’s ovarian reserve and hormone levels. Blood tests can also be helpful in providing information about how a patient is responding to fertility medications.
Preconception genetic screening. Doctors utilize this screening to determine whether the patient has any inheritable genetic conditions. If testing reveals such a condition, the doctor might recommend in vitro fertilization (IVF) with preimplantation genetic testing (PGT). This can help ensure that they only transfer a healthy embryo into the uterus of the patient or their gestational surrogate.
The combination of ultrasounds and other fertility tests can help the Indianapolis fertility doctors at our clinic make the right infertility diagnosis. Then, they can create a treatment plan that gives the patient the best chance of taking home a healthy baby. Contact us for more information about our fertility services.