Having trouble getting pregnant can be very frustrating for couples. We understand the difficulties that you might be experiencing during this emotional time. You are not alone. We can assist you in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. There are many treatments available and we will work with you to find the best options.

Definition of infertility

Infertility is defined as 12 months or more of unprotected intercourse without pregnancy. If you are 35 or older, infertility is defined as 6 months or more of unprotected intercourse without pregnancy.

  • "Primary infertility" is infertility without any previous pregnancy.
  • "Secondary infertility" is fertility problems occurring in a couple that has previously conceived in the past.

Fertility issues can be attributed to female factors 45% of the time. Male factors account for 40% of the time, and unknown reasons 15% of the time.

Some couples will start the infertility workup with their general gynecologist while others will go straight to a fertility specialist - either choice is initially appropriate.

It is strongly advised that if you are 35 or older, that you and your partner see a doctor trained to treat infertility immediately as egg quality issues and increased risks of genetic problems are often the "cause" for the infertility and you will need more advanced procedures to help you conceive.

It is prudent to seek medical help for fertility issues without waiting for a year if you have or have had a condition that can increase the risk of fertility problems such as endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome, or recurrent pregnancy losses, or recurrent tubal pregnancies.

Common testing

There are several tests than can be conducted to determine whether your fertility issues can be attributed to female or male factors or both. These tests include:

  • a variety of blood tests
  • Hysterosalpingogram (HSG) which is an outpatient procedure that checks for blockages in the fallopian tubes or uterine abnormalities (such as polyps or fibroids) using x-ray and dye
  • semen analysis
  • additional outpatient procedures to assess problems found during the Hysterosalpingogram (HSG)

After you complete your evaluation, talk with your doctor to discuss next steps. Dr. Debra Schell, our Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologist, is also available for advanced fertility services.


Specialized fertility procedures: Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

If your gynecologist or fertility specialist determines that treatment for your difficulties conceiving will most likely involve either IUI of IVF, both services are offered here at Milwaukee Ob-Gyn. Contact us at 414.476.0306 for a consultation.

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

During intercourse, only about 20% of sperm make it into the uterus and up the tubes. Through IUI, 100% of the best sperm make it into the uterus and up into the tubes.

During the procedure, a tiny catheter is placed into the uterus and the sperm is injected with a syringe. Although most women say they feel nothing, there may be some cramping at the time of injection of the sperm.

The complete IUI Cycle is performed right here in our office by Dr. Debra Schell or Dr. Debora Sportiello.

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

Dr. Debra Schell performs In Vitro Fertilization in all its forms in conjunction with the Wisconsin Fertility Institute in Middleton, WI.

All ultrasounds, labs, consults and pre-IVF work up are completed at our office.

The actual retrieval of eggs, embryology services and transfer of embryos is done by Dr. Schell at the Wisconsin Fertility Institute. Patients accompany her there twice during their cycle.