Stark medical offices lined with explicit magazines have long been the fodder of television sitcoms that take on the subject of infertility.
But for the six million women and their partners in the U.S. who report difficulties conceiving, the stress and discomfort of approaching a doctor's office is no laughing matter.
Now couples have another option on path towards parenthood.
The first at-home fertility screening kit for men and women hits store shelves across the U.S. on Monday, allowing couples to assess their fertility in the privacy of their own homes.
Fertell is screening technology developed by Genosis Inc., and has been available in the UK and Ireland. It is the only test of its kind, including fertility screening for both men and women in one package.
The kit includes a male fertility test that measures the concentration of motile sperm, a key indicator of sperm health.
The female fertility test measures a particular hormone that is a marker for the age of a woman's ovaries and their ability to produce eggs. Both tests produce results in less than 90 minutes.
The test is 95 percent accurate compared to standard lab tests, but even more important, it stresses that it takes two to make a baby.
"Many women believe that the ability to conceive a baby is primarily up to them," Robert Thompson, president of Genosis said in a news release. "In fact, research shows that the issues affecting fertility are almost evenly split between the sexes. Because of this it is essential to involve and screen both partners."
Fertell retails for approximately $100 and is available at CVS/pharmacy and Longs Drugs Stores, and also online at www.fertell.com.