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Endometriosis and your fertility

We want everyone with endometriosis to be empowered with helpful advice on how it affects their fertility and what they can do about it.

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Getting pregnant with endometriosis

Endometriosis affects up to 1 in 10 women, but many feel confused about what it means for their fertility.


Many people with endometriosis go on to conceive naturally, but it’s important to start your journey with an understanding of your fertility health and when to seek specialist support.


Our fertility specialists share the facts on how endometriosis affects getting pregnant, and what you can do about it.


On this page, our consultant gynaecologist Dr Chris Guyer shares the facts:


  • How endometriosis affects fertility and getting pregnant

  • How to find out your personal chances of getting pregnant

  • What you can do about it, including tests and fertility treatment

  • Stories from people with endometriosis who’ve had fertility options

Endometriosis doesn't mean giving up on your fertility journey. You can still get pregnant, though you might need extra help with treatments like IVF.

- Dr Chris Guyer, Consultant Gynaecologist at TFP Fertility

What is endometriosis? 

Endometriosis is when tissue that normally lines the womb, called the endometrium, grows in places it shouldn’t be like the ovaries and fallopian tubes.


The main symptom is pain, which can be difficult to cope with as it shows up in many areas of life, including:


  • Before and after your period

  • During penetrative sex

  • Going to the toilet, including peeing and opening your bowels


Our advice has always been that if the pain doesn’t seem like an ordinary period pain, then seek advice from a GP.

Can endometriosis cause infertility?

Having endometriosis doesn’t mean you’re infertile, and it affects everyone differently.


And just like everyone, age is the main factor affecting your fertility.


Mild to moderate endometriosis is likely to mean you have ‘sub-fertility’, where it takes longer to get pregnant naturally.


People with severe endometriosis may need fertility treatment to get pregnant.


This is when there is lots of endometrial tissue sticking to the bowel, bladder or ureter, which is tricky to remove.


“This can start to cause fertility problems. We suspect the inflammation can impact egg production, fertilisation and sperm, so often people will need IVF treatment to help,” explains Dr Chris.

Hearing your endometriosis experiences

A recent poll from The Ribbon Box, a platform providing free fertility support, found that people with endometriosis simply aren’t getting the support they deserve.


  • 100% of people agreed they feel worried about their fertility and future pregnancy

  • Yet 1 in 2 people said their condition wasn’t explained properly, and they feel unclear about what it means for them

  • Overall, people said they want more consistent advice and support


If this resonates with you, please know that you don’t have to manage endometriosis and fertility alone.


Our specialists are here to provide advice, tests, and treatment, and connect you with endometriosis clinics for the right support.

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Testing your fertility with endometriosis

Having a laparoscopy is an important step in understanding how endometriosis is affecting your fertility.


Some people may choose to have this done privately, and we can connect you with endometriosis centres to see a specialist.


Beyond this, we’re here with endometriosis specialists at TFP Fertility to give advice and offer fertility assessments to give a more detailed picture of your fertility health.


We can then support you in exploring the next steps, including whether specialist treatments like IVF could help.




Laparoscopy and endometriosis

A laparoscopy is a procedure where a small camera looks inside the womb, and the extra tissue is cut away.


The procedure helps to understand how likely you are to get pregnant naturally.


For people with mild endometriosis, it can also improve the chances of getting pregnant - before fertility treatment or naturally.


Having a laparoscopy is an important step in understanding how endometriosis is affecting your fertility.


You can choose to have this done privately to get fast access to results and onward care.


Dr Guyer says:

Many of our patients seek a private diagnosis if GP waiting lists are too long. You can find specialists online, and TFP Fertility can also advise on specialists through our links to endometriosis centres.




Fertility assessment

Our specialists offer fertility assessment to show what’s going on with your fertility, and whether treatment is needed.


We can support you in exploring your options, including whether specialist treatments like IVF could help.


Dr Guyer says:

With this condition, it’s important to speak with a specialist if you know you want to start trying for a family. Tests can show what’s going on with your fertility, and whether treatment is needed.

What does a fertility assessment look at?

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    AMH blood test

    Knowing your personal anti-Mullerian hormone (AMH) levels tells us a lot about your fertility, as it indicates how many eggs you have (ovarian reserve).

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    AFC Transvaginal scan

    The antral follicle count (AFC) scan is an ultrasound that checks your ovarian reserve. AFC is often lowered in people with endometriosis.

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    Fertility tests for your partner

    If you’re trying to get pregnant with a male partner, it’s a good idea to check whether any fertility problems are contributing on their side, usually with a sperm test.

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Check your fertility

If you're planning to start a family and you have endometriosis, a fertility assessment is a great first step in getting personalised fertility support.

Fertility treatments for endometriosis

Not everyone with endometriosis needs fertility treatment.


We're here to help you explore ways to improve your chances of pregnancy with dedicated endometriosis specialists, whether that’s accessing a laparoscopy referral or taking the next step with IVF.




In vitro fertilisation

IVF is one of the most successful and commonly used fertility treatments, and it can help people with endometriosis to get pregnant.


It’s recommended to explore IVF if you have endometriosis and have been trying for longer than two years.


You might wish to consider treatment earlier - especially if you’re getting to an age where fertility is a concern.


We're proud to have helped many people with endometriosis to become parents and continue to provide tailored treatment programs for those with the condition.

It’s important to stress that if a woman is looking to have treatment to ensure whoever is doing it is recognised as a specialist in endometriosis. We have our own endometriosis specialists here at TFP Fertility.

- Dr Chris Guyer, Consultant Gynaecologist at TFP Fertility

FAQs

What are my chances of getting pregnant with endometriosis?

It's thought that around 2 in 3 people with endometriosis can get pregnant naturally, though it may take longer.


It's important to know that your age is the main factor affecting your fertility. 

Can endometriosis cause miscarriage?

It's currently unclear whether endometriosis increases your risk of miscarriage, as studies have found different results.


Miscarriage is common in all pregnancies and affects around 1 in 8 pregnancies. 

 

It's understandable to worry about miscarriage in pregnancy, especially when you have a fertility condition.


Speaking to your doctor or a fertility specialist can help. They'll be able to answer any questions you may have and give advice. 

Is endometriosis genetic?

Sometimes endometriosis runs in families, suggesting that genetics could be a factor.


It's unlikely to be the only reason behind your endometriosis, especially if you don't have a family history of the condition. 

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