Information for the public
Published February 2013

Assessment and treatment for people with fertility problems

This is an extract from a NICE publication. The complete publication is available at

About this information

NICE clinical guidelines advise the NHS on caring for people with specific conditions or diseases and the treatments they should receive. The information applies to people using the NHS in England and Wales.

This information explains the advice about assessment and treatment for people with fertility problems that is set out in NICE clinical guideline 156.

All of the treatment and care that NICE recommends is in line with the NHS Constitution ( NICE has also produced advice on improving the experience of care for adults using the NHS. For more information go to 'About care in the NHS' (

This is an update of advice on fertility that NICE produced in 2004.

Does this information apply to me?

Yes, if:

  • you have fertility problems (that is, you or your partner are having trouble getting pregnant)

  • you need particular treatment or help for you or your partner to get pregnant, including if:

    • you are in a same-sex relationship and have not been able to conceive through donor insemination

    • you are unable (or find it very difficult) to have sexual intercourse, for example, because of a physical disability

    • you or your partner have a condition that means you need specific help to conceive (for example, a long-term viral infection such as HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C that could be passed on through unprotected sexual intercourse)

  • you are preparing for cancer treatment that might affect your fertility and you wish to preserve your fertility.