Sometimes the cause of infertility can be attributed to congenital anomalies (birth defects) of the uterus. Although these uterine anomalies are not always the cause of infertility, they can cause recurrent miscarriages and create difficulties in carrying a pregnancy to term.
The doctors at Colorado Reproductive Endocrinology are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of uterine anomalies.
Through the use of advanced imaging techniques such as hysterosalpingograms (HSG) and transvaginal ultrasounds in reproductive-age women, doctors are more easily able to detect the presence of uterine anomalies in patients.
Common types of uterine anomalies include:
In this malformation, a wall, or septum, separates the uterine cavity into two different cavities. Women with this condition can have miscarriage rates of up to 85%. It is often recommended that women with this condition have the septum surgically removed, a simple procedure that can be performed with robotic and minimally invasive techniques.
An arcuate uterus is sometimes called a heart-shaped uterus because the top of the uterine cavity has a slight indentation in this condition. This condition is not associated with a difficulty in getting pregnant, so treatment is usually not indicated.
A bicornuate uterus is a condition where the upper part of the uterus has two distinct bodies, instead of one. Most women with a bicornuate uterus will not have difficulty getting pregnant, but some may have recurrent miscarriage and a higher risk of preterm labor. This uterine malformation can be corrected with surgery, although it is not usually required.
This condition exists when a woman has two separate uterine bodies, each one with a cervix. Women with this malformation typically do not have substantially increased difficulty in getting pregnant, but they may be at a higher risk for preterm delivery, breech delivery, and miscarriage.
This is a condition where only half of the uterus has formed. Usually only one fallopian tube branches off of the uterus, instead of two. There may also be a small remnant of the other half of the uterus that did not form properly. Women who have a unicornuate uterus are at risk of reproductive complications, and may have a difficult time becoming pregnant because they have only one functioning fallopian tube.
This anomaly, also called uterine agenesis, is when the uterus never develops. Women who do not have a uterus cannot carry a pregnancy, but can still have their own biological children with the use of in vitro fertilization (IVF) and a gestational carrier.
If you have been diagnosed with, or are suspected of having a uterine anomaly, the physicians at Colorado Reproductive Endocrinology are here to provide you with the necessary information to help you make informed treatment decisions.
If you have any questions about how to start treatment, or would like a consultation on your options for family building, please call us at (303) 321-7115 or request an appointment.