Inflammatory conditions, including ‘silent’ endometriosis, are proven to account for a significant percentage of infertility cases. But until the last few years, testing has been limited. Unexplained infertility, inflammatory conditions – particularly endometriosis – and other ‘hard-to-diagnose’ conditions have gone untreated, with many patients left reliant on their own research to push for investigation.
ReceptivaDx™ is the first-of-its-kind test to identify inflammatory conditions like silent endometriosis, without resorting to expensive (and invasive) surgical laparoscopy. Even if laparoscopy is part of your treatment plan, it isn’t usually advised unless you have ‘major’ physical symptoms.
What is the BCL6 IVF (and fertility) connection?
Endometriosis – the presence of additional uterine tissue outside of the uterus – is a leading cause of implantation failure, miscarriage and infertility. During diagnosis, high levels of a protein called B-cell CLL/lymphoma 6 (BCL6) are often associated with inflammation, usually endometriosis. By testing for the presence of BCL6, ReceptivaDx™ is able to detect inflammation of the uterine lining – such as endometriosis – which can limit an embryo’s ability to implant, or ‘stick’.
In our recent Insta poll, just 5 per cent of over 1,000 respondents had heard of, or been tested for, BCL6. Knowledge is power – and one of our fundamentals here on the FHH team – so if you’re hitting a brick wall with your treatment or diagnosis, BCL6 testing could be pivotal.
Nearly a quarter of women with endometriosis have no symptoms. For this group, ‘silent’ endometriosis can be extremely difficult to diagnose – or even investigate – making non-invasive testing like the ReceptivaDx™ option a key tool for patients with unexplained infertility.
By doing the test, you’re either confirming an inflammatory condition (with a positive result), or ruling it out, and moving on with your investigation and treatment plan.
What are the treatment options if my BCL6 test comes back positive?
There are two standard treatment approaches.
The first is surgical laparoscopy which can be used to remove the endometriosis from your uterus. The second is taking hormone suppression medication – usually Depot Lupron – for 60 days. These quiet the inflammatory impact of the endometriosis, allowing for a better chance of successful transfer (if undergoing IVF), or improving the probability of getting pregnant naturally.
Women treated for a positive BCL6 result see a 5-fold improvement in successfully getting pregnant.
Schedule a test or find a center offering ReceptivaDx™, or ask your healthcare provider for more details.
Step 3 – Regroup (and ask lots of questions)
A diagnosis, in any form, can be hard to hear. As a team, we’ve been there, and we don’t take this process lightly. But sitting down or connecting with your doctor, only to be told that your TTC struggles are ‘unexplained’, can be far more difficult, and frustrating.
‘Unexplained’ does not mean a closed door, however. Or, it shouldn’t. If unexplained infertility becomes part of the conversation with your doctor – and your treatment plan – it’s time to ask a few key questions. For us, these included:
- Given my/our age, what should we do next?
- Are there any nutritional deficiencies we should look into?
- Could any underlying medical conditions be causing our fertility issues?
- Can we look into hormonal testing?
- Should we check for silent endometriosis?
With all of this covered, booked in and in-play, you could move on to asking:
- What treatment options do you recommend, and in what order?
- When can we start treatment?
- What are the success rates like (in general and in-clinic) for people in my situation?
Most importantly, keep asking ‘what next?’ There is almost always another option to try – another test to look into, or route to take. So if you want to try something else, and see more options from your team, just ask.
Keen to rule out endometriosis – and silent endometriosis – from your unexplained infertility? Connect with ReceptivaDx™ to book your test.
TRB readers can claim $75 off a ReceptivaDX test, use code TRB23 on your test request form.