The South West’s largest private hospital is pioneering a 'one-stop' outpatient service for couples having fertility problems.
Patients can undergo a series of tests at Spire Bristol Hospital’s fertility and reproductive medicine clinic which establish the cause of the problem, and receive expert advice and guidance on treatment options, all within a single visit.
Both male and female partners can attend the sessions, which are run by consultant gynaecologist Valentine Akande.
Prior to the consultation the male partner undergoes a sperm test and the female partner has a blood test to investigate any hormonal imbalances and to check for infections such as rubella and chlamydia.
The consultation then comprises a one-and-a-half hour fertility consultation which includes an ultrasound scan of the uterus and ovaries, a test to check whether the Fallopian tubes are blocked or open, and discussion of the blood and sperm test results.
“This one-stop service is the first of its kind in the South West and has the advantage of reducing the stress of repeated fertility tests and delays in treatment for couples,” says Mr Akande.
“A one-stop appointment in not suitable for everyone, however. Couples where a known problem exists, such as blocked tubes or a low sperm count, or where extensive tests have already been done, should have a standard appointment.”