A common misconception is that if you’ve had a successful pregnancy and birth, that it should be straightforward to conceive again, however that is not always the case. Although a little-known issue, secondary infertility is estimated to account for 60% of fertility cases and that roughly one in six couples encounter infertility across Ireland.
VIP spoke with Roseanna and Ollie Ruane about their fertility journey. The couple, who married in 2009, welcomed a daughter, Saoirse in 2012. They later began to try for a second baby but after three failed IUI’s they switched their focus to building their forever family home.
When the couple decided they wanted to try for a second child again, they approached the ReproMed Clinic in Dublin. This was a whole different world for them with early morning trips from Galway to Dublin for bloods and scans. After beginning their first cycle in November 2017 Roseanna had all the dates planned out in her head, as every woman does, but again there was heartache as she developed ovarian hyper stimulation. It was game over on their very first round.
As they entered the New Year, to their complete shock they found out Roseanna was pregnant, and at their eight-week scan they heard the heartbeat and by their ten-week scan it was gone. After the grief, the miscarriage and the recovery, Roseanna returned to work and after seeking advice from both her GP and her gynaecologist the pair returned to ReproMed for a new cycle in April of 2018 and after seven long years of infertility they finally fell pregnant and had their little miracle Farrah Rose through ICSI who was born on New Year’s Day 2019.
Speaking about the experience Roseanna shared; “I could talk all day about what
we went through, the pain was immense and the memories never leave. It’s such a painful part of people’s lives but I strongly believe speaking about it will encourage others to stay strong and focused. People told me I was very determined, as if it were a bad thing. I’m so glad I was and I am so grateful to ReproMed for helping us make it happen.”
As the couple had already successfully conceived their first child with no problems at all, they never expected to have difficulties the second time around. So what can cause Secondary Infertility?
Age is very important because women are born with their full egg quantity. Egg quality starts to significantly deteriorate after the age of 35 so if you are trying to conceive after this age, you may be having some issues. There could also be complications related to a prior pregnancy or surgery, for example damage to fallopian tubes, a previous caesarean section or an ectopic pregnancy.
Ovulation disorders, endometriosis, PCOS and fibroids can all cause fertility issues. Risk factor changes for you or your partner, such as diet and lifestyle factors or use of certain medications can also alter fertility.
According to Aoife Corley, Nurse & Midwife Manager for ReproMed; “Secondary infertility is common and something a lot of people don’t realise can happen, especially if the first conception was straightforward.”
“There are lots of reasons to stay positive so don’t panic. There are several treatment options that are available so if you have been referred to a specialist, they will give you the best advice and the treatment route that you will take very much depends on the type of fertility issue you experience. Help is available to those struggling so it’s important to not lose hope.”
For more information head to www.repromed.ie
IG – @repromed.ireland