A Patient’s Puzzle: Five Years of Marriage without Conception


By Dr. Goke Akinrogunde

Permit me to share my worries with you. I have been married for five years without a child.
All efforts to conceive over these years have proven abortive; please I will appreciate your guide on the matter

Thanking you for your early response.

Dear Vero,
Your inner worries are well convened in this mail. One thing however is the fact that infertility and sub-fertility cases are quite common and you need not feel that yours is exceptional. As a matter of fact there are cases with worse bearings – vis-à-vis many more years than five years without an issue after getting married; and somehow they carried on until the point when the situation turned for good – now having children.

For one, you need to get it clear that it takes two to tango; in this wise, it means that both the male and female partners must have proper fertility health profile before conception can take place. Data collection worldwide had it that, in infertility cases, men and women were found wanting or deficient in materials and conditions necessary for effective fertility processes.

Interestingly, research findings in some centers even postulate that in these days of epidemic sub-fertility / infertility, it is a ratio 50:50, for both male and female partners.

One thing I know for sure is that unlike what was the case years back, most cases of infertility can now be cured per medical interventions.

First line intervention can come in the mode of mere counseling about when (and sometimes how) to have intercourse while monitoring the ovulation process in the woman. Generally, baseline and advanced investigations of both partners would have sufficed before commencing monitoring.

Where either of the partners is found inadequate with the instituted investigations, appropriate intervention are advised and administered where financial means is not an issue.

From personal interaction, I have come across partners whose mode of work-engagements was traced as the major reason for the delay at conceiving. Imagine what “modern” day capitalist work engagement has done to families, with a number of families condemned to living apart recurrently, couples finds themselves ‘partnering’ hundreds kilometer (and some over the seas) apart, perhaps only available for one or at most twice sex intercourse in a month (or in months) no thanks to job-engagements. In these types of scenario, even when we found that both partners have medical indices good enough to conceive, it wasn’t surprising that this was not the case, since to get pregnant, one must have sexual intercourse with appropriate timing.

In the light of the foregoing, I am inclined to suggest that proper workup investigations by appropriate medical practitioners, with requisite experience and expertise, would assist your case. I encourage you to give it a trial.
Best wishes