Tulsa Fertility Center White Logo

Ovulatory Dysfunction

Discover how ovulatory dysfunction affects a woman’s path to parenthood

Doctors at our Oklahoma fertility center help women with ovulatory dysfunction overcome this common fertility challenge. This condition consists of irregular ovulation or a complete lack of ovulation, which can make it incredibly difficult for a woman to become pregnant. After diagnosing this ovulation issue, our fertility specialists can recommend certain treatments that can trigger ovulation and significantly increase the chance of pregnancy.

Learn about the symptoms of ovulatory dysfunction and how doctors diagnose the condition

Ovulatory dysfunction can lead to a range of symptoms. Because women can sometimes mistake these symptoms for other conditions, it’s important to seek the support of a fertility specialist when experiencing signs of an ovulation disorder.

  • Irregular cycles that range from 30 to 90 or more days
  • Little to no symptoms such as cramping, breast tenderness or fatigue leading up to a period
  • An absence of discomfort mid-cycle when ovulation typically occurs
  • Milky breast discharge
  • Increase in hair growth on the face, chest or back
  • Infertility

When a doctor at our Oklahoma fertility center suspects a woman has an ovulation disorder, they will recommend a blood test to assess the woman’s hormone levels. The results of this test often indicate if the woman is experiencing an ovulatory issue.

Various conditions can cause ovulation dysfunction

Certain medical conditions can cause ovulatory dysfunction. If a woman has any of these conditions and cannot become pregnant, a fertility doctor will likely assess if ovulation challenges are the cause of her infertility.

Hyperthyroidism. This hormone condition can cause abnormal levels of the protein SHBG, or sex hormone binding globulin, and the hormone prolactin. These hormone irregularities can prevent the ovaries from releasing eggs.

Hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism results in the thyroid gland not producing enough of certain reproductive hormones, and can affect ovulation.

Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS. The higher levels of androgen PCOS causes interfere with ovulation.

Premature ovarian failure. When a woman’s ovaries cease normal function before the age of 40, they stop producing normal amounts of estrogen and regularly releasing an egg.

Too much prolactin. High levels of prolactin can cause ovulation issues. While prolactin has many functions, its primary role is the development of mammary glands and milk production.

With the expert support of our clinic, women can receive fertility treatment that helps them overcome these ovulation issues and take the next steps toward parenthood.

Our patients receive effective treatment for ovulation disorders

The primary treatment for ovulatory dysfunction is ovulation induction medication. If a woman has high-quality eggs and no other fertility issues, this type of treatment has a good chance of resulting in pregnancy.

Common ovulation induction medications. Commonly prescribed oral ovulation induction medications include clomiphene citrate, also called Clomid® and Serophene®, and letrozole, also called Femara®. These medications cause the ovaries to release follicle-stimulating hormone, or FSH, which often results in the release of at least one egg.

In some cases, women require an injectable fertility medication, such as a gonadotropin, also called Menopur®, Pregnyl® and other brand names.

Factors that affect the success of these medications. A woman’s age, and the presence of underlying medical issues such as PCOS, may affect the success of ovulation induction medications.

Women with certain fertility challenges can benefit from taking ovulation induction medications in conjunction with IUI, or intrauterine insemination, or IVF.

Monitoring for patients on some medications. Certain ovulation induction medications require women to receive frequent monitoring, which allows the doctor to track the growth of the woman’s egg follicles and hormone levels.

While ovulation dysfunction is a common fertility issue, it’s also one of the simplest issues to treat. Often, patients at our Oklahoma fertility center who have this condition fulfill the dream of building their families.

Contact us for more information about our fertility services.