What Could be Preventing Pregnancy?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
Hello. I am so glad that this service is here for us to use! I hope you can help answer some questions and ease my mind.

I have one child already and he is 7 years old. My husband and I have been trying since he was one year to have another with no success. As far as I know the doctors had no worries about anything and I felt fine during my entire pregnancy. I was 21 years old at the time.I have had blood tests, ovulation tests, and ultrasounds and nothing has been found that would prevent pregnancy. The problems that I do have are that my cycle is extremely different than it was before getting pregnant with my son. The timing is still right on and the length of my cycles are the same every month. The difference is that the cramping is almost unbearable at times and I don't have a "flow" meaning that it isn't normal blood; it is large clots. The largest clots come in the first 3 days of my cycle and the last 2 days are almost nothing at all. Sometimes after a few days of nothing I will have a large one again and then it is all clear until the next month. I get really tired the very first day of my cycle also and have a lot of energy on my last day.

What could possible be my problem? My husband has been tested and although mobility is slightly down no other problems have been found with him either. I know this was a long explanation of my problem but I am getting no answers from my doctor and I am really hoping you might be able to help. Thank you so much.

ANSWER

I'm assuming the blood tests for thyroid problems and antibody problems were all normal. If you hadn't told me that you have had ovulation tests, I would suspect that you are not ovulating. If you mean that you are measuring your temperature and cervical mucus and using an ovulation predictor kit each month, and it appears that you are ovulating about 14 days before you menstruate, then I think it might be a good idea to get an ultrasound when you are ovulating just to make sure that an egg is actually being released. If it is, and your husband's test was recent, then I'm stumped!

-- Cynthia, CNM

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.