Infertility — Causes, Risk Factors & Treatments - 💥LarsonReever🇺🇸

By 💥LarsonReever🇺🇸

💥LarsonReever🇺🇸

Infertility is the inability of a couple to become pregnant or, for a woman, to complete a pregnancy. If you cannot get pregnant after one year of regular sex, then you can consider some kind of alteration. And if you are over 40, we recommend visiting a fertility specialist after only six months of unsuccessful sex.

In fact, even though medically assisted procreation treatments are very effective today, the fact remains that age is the key to assisted procreation treatments. It has become the main factor of all the problems of women and/or couples who fail to procreate naturally.

Fertility specialists are unanimous in saying that we must not wait: the older we get, the more problems of infertility occur. Fertility is therefore well related to the age of the woman.

The reproduction rate in humans is not very high. The chances of getting pregnant after having sex during the woman’s ovulation period are only 25%.

In vitro fertilization, also known by its initials “IVF”, is the most frequently used human reproductive treatment in the clinics as it is currently the best reproductive medicine option that offers the greatest chance of pregnancy for those women who are struggling to become pregnant after one year of attempts from the age of 35.

The treatment consists of performing egg fertilization or egg freezing with sperm in the embryology laboratory; an in vitro process that requires laboratory cultivation to allow observation of the correct development of the embryos and subsequent transfer to the uterus to confirm pregnancy.

Further Reading: Infertility_in_Men_and_Women_Overview_- Approach_&_Evaluation (DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.3568745)

Tests to determine if a member of the couple, or both, are infertile

Examinations to determine infertility require the development of a complete clinical record, as well as a physical examination of both spouses.

In the particular case of the woman, the basic tests include a hormonal study, ultrasound and hysterosalpingography. These examinations may be supplemented by others depending on the patient.

To complete the diagnosis, it will also be necessary to evaluate the sperm quality of the spouse by performing a spermogram.

To study male fertility, an analysis is carried out with the objective of counting spermatozoa, their activity and their form.

Fertility will be normal if one obtains 39 million sperm present in the ejaculate with at least 32% of spermatozoa in progression movement and at least 4% of them having a normal form.

If these quantities are lower, the probability of achieving pregnancy decreases considerably.

The infertility specialist will then refer the couple to a very specific treatment called In Vitro Fertilization with Intracytoplasmic Injection, IVF ICSI.

What causes infertility?

The causes of infertility can be multiple. They are of feminine or masculine origin and mixed for many couples. The evolution of our society also contributes to the increase of infertility. The decline in the average age of motherhood for women, but also certain behavioral and environmental factors have a negative influence on fertility.

One in seven couples would now have problems conceiving a child. If the female age is often involved, various pathologies can also be at the origin of infertility, whether in men or women, as well as environmental or lifestyle factors.

Major causes of female infertility

Female infertility can be caused by cervical changes such as cervical lesions or stenosis. In the case of cervical pathology, the cervix no longer ensures its buffer function, thus making fertilization uncertain. The most common cervical causes of infertility:

  • the polyps
  • endometriosis
  • certain sequences of surgical intervention or curettage (conization, Asherman’s syndrome)
  • exposure to DES, etc.
  • Genetic factors

Quite often, some genetic syndromes, such as Turner’s syndrome, are accompanied by infertility, as do certain gene traits (for example, fragile X syndrome leading to early menopause).

Major causes of male infertility

Most diagnosed male infertility is schematically divided into 2 major groups:

  • Disorders of spermatogenesis
  • Excretory infertility

In some cases, damage to the genital tract prevents sperm from traveling the path of fertilization. These disorders are classified into different families according to their origins.

In the case of obstruction of the seminal tract which represents 6% of male infertility, it is called obstructive or excretory azoospermia (or in less serious cases, oligospermia). Again, these difficulties to conceive can be present from birth (vesiculo-deferential agenesis, cystic fibrosis, Young’s syndrome, etc.) or acquired following an infection (tuberculosis, chlamydia, etc.) or trauma.

Post-infectious infertility is always due, as its name suggests, to a prior infection, usually urinary or sexually transmitted (urethritis, epididymitis, prostatitis).

Autoimmune Infertility: In 8% of infertile men, conception is made difficult because of the formation of anti-spermatozoid autoantibodies. As a result, gametes lose mobility, fertilize, tend to clump together and migrate poorly in the cervical mucus.

Ejaculation disorders and sexual disturbances, such as retrograde ejaculation, anejaculation or erectile dysfunction. They make up about 5% of male infertility.

Other Infertility Risk Factors

Beyond these gender specificities, lifestyle factors and environmental exposures are now recognized as disrupting fertility in both men and women.

Among them :

  • overweight or underweight,
  • working conditions (prolonged exposure to heat, long transport times)
  • stress
  • lack of sleep
  • tobacco, alcohol, drugs (and coffee for women)
  • exposure to pesticides, some of which are known endocrine disruptors
  • exposure to other toxic substances (arsenic, lead, aluminum, mercury, parabens, Bisphenol A),
  • intensive sport
  • prolonged exposure to mobile waves

Fertility Treatments

As a general rule, although there are many exceptions, we start with less intense treatments and resort to more complex procedures only if they are needed. During your treatment, we will discuss with you the good and bad aspects of each procedure and offer you the options that best meet your medical, emotional and financial needs.

As a part of your treatment plan, your doctor may at any time advise you on some or all of the procedures listed below:

  • Drugs to treat infertility with sexual intercourse (80% of infertility problems are resolved by taking medication)
  • Natural IUI
  • Drugs to treat infertility combined with an IUI
  • Surgery
  • IVF

Here are other options available to you:

Egg donation: It is recommended when a woman is unable to become pregnant with her own eggs but wants to carry a baby and give birth to the baby.

Gestational surrogate mother (surrogacy): Surrogacy is chosen by women who are unable to carry a full-term pregnancy or who have a uterine problem that could trigger premature labor or reduce the chances of success.

Adoption: Adoption is chosen by couples who are unable to have a biologically related child, or who choose not to have one.

Embryo donation: Embryo donation is chosen by couples who are unable to have a child with their own eggs and sperm, but who want the woman to carry a child and give birth to the baby.

Who is this treatment right for?

In vitro fertilization can be done with the sperm of a donor or partner, and allows us to optimize the process of fertilization when it is made difficult by other causes. This treatment is recommended in the following cases:

  • Women after several artificial inseminations without success.
  • Women with advanced endometriosis with repercussions on the fallopian tubes and oocyte quality.
  • Women from a certain age, with poor oocyte quality.
  • Women with trunks damaged or without trunks.
  • Women with hydrosalpinx.
  • Single women
  • If a surrogate is needed
  • Unexplained infertility
  • Couples to perform a preimplantation genetic study.
  • Couples where the man has a poor spermatic quality (moderate or severe male factor).
  • Male factor infertility, including decreased sperm count or sperm motility
  • Women with ovulation disorders, low ovarian reserve, fibroids
  • Same-sex couples Special Fertility Programs in South California By Eden

In reality, there is no “typical” infertility treatment process. However, successful treatment begins in a fertility clinic where you will be treated by seasoned professionals who have a long list of success stories.

Whether you need treatment for female or male infertility problems, or a combination of both, at Eden Fertility, we offer a wide range of treatments and technologies that can help you conceive a child, such as intrauterine insemination. (IUI) and in vitro fertilization (IVF). Knowing how infertility can cause anxiety, we also provide emotional and psychological support to our patients.

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