Did you know that infertility affects about 10-15% of couples in the United States? Conception depends on a number of factors, including the production of healthy sperm by the man, healthy eggs produced by the woman, the sperm’s ability to fertilize the egg, the ability of the fertilized egg to become implanted in the woman’s uterus, and other factors. In order for the pregnancy to progress to full term, the embryo must be healthy and the woman’s hormonal environment must be adequate for its development.
What Causes Infertility in Women?
The most common cause is ovulation disorders, which affect about 25% of all infertility situations. Blocked fallopian tubes, which can occur when a woman has had pelvic inflammatory disease or endometriosis, is another cause of female infertility. Congenital anomalies, also known as birth defects, involving the structure of the uterus and uterine fibroids that are associated with repeated miscarriages can also cause female infertility. Aging can cause female infertility, especially after 35, since the ability for ovaries to produce eggs declines with age.
When Should A Woman Get Tested For Infertility?
Women under 35 should begin testing after trying to conceive unsuccessfully for a year. Women over 35 should begin testing after 6 months of unsuccessful attempts to conceive.
How Is Infertility Diagnosed?
When visiting with a doctor, the doctor will conduct a physical examination of both partners to determine their general state of health and to search for any physical disorders that may contribute to infertility. The doctor may also speak to both partners about their sexual habits to determine whether intercourse is taking place properly for conception. If no cause is determined, more specific tests may be needed. This may include an analysis of body temperature and ovulation, x-ray of the fallopian tubes and uterus, and laparoscopy for women. For men, semen analysis.
How Is Infertility Treated?
Many infertility cases are treated with drug treatment or surgical repair of reproductive organs. On the other hand, assisted reproductive technologies like in vitro fertilization (IVF) can also be used. During IVF, eggs are surgically removed from the ovary and mixed with sperm. Fertilized eggs are then placed in the woman’s uterus.
The North Carolina Center for Reproductive Medicine/Talbert Fertility Institute is the premiere center for reproductive health in North Carolina and the East Coast. Our team specializes in fertility testing, diagnosis, and treatment of infertility conditions. We’re experts in IVF, Tubal Ligation Reversal, Male Infertility, Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), Gestation Surrogacy, Family Balancing, and more. Contact us today.