Examinations for women
Methods used frequently include:
Various hormones can have an effect on fertility. Besides the determination of basal hormone levels, change in hormones during the cycle can provide information about possible causes of impaired fertility. Therefore, blood levels of various hormones are determined on certain days of the menstrual cycle. At the beginning of the cycle, these are primarily: estrogen, LH, FSH, androgens, prolactin and TSH. Progesterone and estrogen levels may be measured in the second half of the cycle. In specific cases, further hormone function tests may be necessary.
Ultrasound examinations are used to check important functions of female reproductive apparatus. Firstly, the regular structure of the uterus, the lining and the ovaries can be examined, and, if present, diseases such as fibroids, polyps or mucous cysts in the ovary can be diagnosed. Secondly, during the cycle, the regular maturation of ovarian follicles and the uterine lining, or lack thereof, are tracked.
During a multi-year residency in London, Prof. Helmy-Bader acquired extensive expertise in gynecological ultrasound.
This specialist knowledge is crucial for women who have difficulty conceiving: an optimal setting with the best available ultrasound equipment and specialized examination techniques may allow pathologies to be revealed that are not apparent during normal routine examinations. This means that patients can be spared surgical diagnostic procedures.
At Döbling Fertility Center we offer a minimally invasive method for examination of the fallopian tubes. This ultrasound technique (HyCoSy) allows largely pain-free examination to check that the fallopian tubes are clear and functioning properly. This method also results in fewer false positive results in comparison to the usual x-ray examinations. (One disadvantage of x-ray investigations is the semblance of obstructed fallopian tubes as a result of pain-induced cramping.)
HyCoSy offers a significantly improved and gentler alternative method for investigating the function of the fallopian tubes.
If abdominal imaging is required for any reason, this examination of the fallopian tubes can also be carried out at the same time.
Preliminary investigations may lead to suspected diseases that can only be diagnosed and/or treated by laparoscopy. This procedure is performed under general anesthesia. First, through a very small incision in the abdomen below the navel, a tubular instrument (laparoscope) is inserted into the abdominal cavity.
This instrument features a camera which is connected to a monitor, yielding a very accurate picture of the internal reproductive organs. At the same time, it is possible to remove fibroids, cysts , adhesions or endometriosis. Potential complications associated with this study are very rare.
If there is a suspicion of uterine malformations, disruptive muscle knots or mucosal changes in the uterine cavity, further diagnostics and, if necessary, therapeutic measures can be carried out by means of a hysteroscopy (under general anesthesia). Here, a very fine probe is inserted through the vagina and cervix into the uterus, allowing the doctor to accurately evaluate the uterine cavity, as well as interstitial and isthmus of the fallopian tubes via a camera mounted in the probe and to perform surgery if deemed necessary.
We recognize the great physical and psychological stress of one or more miscarriages and here at Döbling Fertility Center we have developed a diagnostic program designed to find possible reasons and their potential causes.
In collaboration with national and international research centers, we analyze blood samples and examine small sections of the endometrium.
In the blood analysis we look for abnormalities such as clotting disorders or immune system problems.
The endometrium is examined for NK cells and plasma cells.