Infertility refers to the inability to conceive or the inability to carry a pregnancy to term. It can occur for a variety of complex reasons, and it can affect both men and women. In fact, almost an equal number of cases of infertility can be attributed to men and women. There are also a number of cases of infertility that simply can’t be explained or are attributable to factors in both the man and the woman.
Medically, a couple is often diagnosed with having infertility if they have tried at the right times to produce a baby with no success for a full year, or for six months if they're trying to conceive and are older than 35.
Causes of Infertility
A whole host of factors can contribute to infertility in both men and women. Often, people can be infertile but show no symptoms so they won’t know it until they try to conceive a child. Lifestyle factors such as older age, a heavier weight, smoking or alcohol abuse can all contribute to infertility. Certain diseases can also cause infertility, including some sexually transmitted diseases, endometriosis and tubal diseases. Some environmental exposures can also lead to infertility.
If you or your partner is found to be infertile, there are now more treatment options than ever before. A variety of medications can be taken by both men and women to boost fertility or reduce certain problems that may cause the inability to have a baby. Artificial insemination is sometimes also used to inject the partner’s or a donor’s sperm into the woman at the time of ovulation. In vitro fertilization is a process in which the woman’s egg is fertilized by the man’s sperm outside of the body in a laboratory. The fertilized egg is then implanted in the woman’s uterus. These are just a handful of the many options available to medically address the problem of infertility.
SOURCE: National Infertility Association
Even a slightly underactive thyroid can impact fertility, new study finds.
Doctors say age remains a better indicator of a woman's 'reproductive potential'
But shedding pounds may bring them back to normal, researcher says
Study found link between exposure to a certain chemical and failed in-vitro fertilization attempts
How this might affect male fertility isn't clear, researchers say
Parent questionnaires revealed no physical, mental distinctions at school age
Biggest effects seen for younger women with older men
Study finds couples who seek in vitro fertilization are not at added risk of divorce
South Korean study found a quieter room was tied to better odds for fatherhood
Research yields mixed results for this traditional Chinese treatment
Study finds genes that boost risk for cardiovascular trouble also up chances of having children
Study found blocking blood flow to growths worked for women who went on to conceive, have children
In study, flushing fallopian tubes with an oil allowed 40 percent of couples to achieve pregnancy
Breakthrough might someday lead to similar organs for infertile women, researchers say
Disrupted sleep patterns could explain the link, three studies suggest
At $12,000 and up a cycle, many forgo second attempt if they don't have coverage
Researchers develop at-home fertility test for men using smartphone app.
It analyzes samples in seconds, with 98 percent accuracy, in the privacy of a man's home, researchers say
Among those of childbearing age, 29 percent had no clinic, while another 11 percent had only one
Study found small link, but researchers not sure if treatments or underlying health problems to blame
Rates of miscarriage higher for those with a previous miscarriage
It's possible, but researcher stresses cause-and-effect link not proven
Pelvic inflammatory disease often caused by sexually transmitted infections, CDC experts say
Millions of women have had a condition that increases the risk of infertility, new study finds.
Researchers say it could shrink donor pool, lead to higher fees
Device an improvement on current implants, researchers say
It's not commonly known that factors such as obesity, laptop use on lap can affect sperm counts
Except for IVF, success rates for many procedures remain in doubt, researchers say
Putting stem cells into hibernation has potential implications for infertility, cancer, regenerative medicine
But researchers say they plan to fine-tune the tool
Mouse study hints at an effect, but studies in humans needed
Many American men take them, but heart and psychological issues can occur, agency says
Study found too little or too much shuteye linked to reduced chance of pregnancy