Female Infertility

Posted by e-Medical PPT Monday, August 27, 2012
What is infertility?
Couples that have been unable to conceive a child after 12 months of regular sexual intercourse without birth control are infertile.
Women who have repeated miscarriages are also said to be infertile.

In order for a woman to become pregnant:
Egg must be released from one of her ovaries (ovulation)
Egg must go through the fallopian tube toward the uterus
Sperm must join with the egg in the fallopian tube (fertilization)
Fertilized egg must attach to the uterine wall (implantation)
Infertility can result from problems that interfere with any of these steps

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine estimates there are 6.1 million people dealing with infertility in the United States -- that's roughly 10% of those trying to conceive. Fortunately, there are many tests and procedures that can identify and treat the causes of infertility.
Ten percent to 15 percent of couples in the United States are infertile. Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having frequent, unprotected sex for at least a year.
One in six couples is infertile. In 40 per cent of cases the problem rests with the male, in 40 per cent with the female, ten per cent with both partners, and in a further ten per cent of cases, the cause is unknown.
Fertility problems strike one in three women over 35.
One in 25 males has a low sperm count and one in 35 is sterile.
For healthy couples in their twenties having regular unprotected sex, the chance of becoming pregnant each month is 25 per cent.
The chance of conceiving in an IVF cycle is on average around 20 per cent (but varies due to individual circumstances).

When should you go see a doctor?
Women in their 30s who've been trying to  become pregnant for six months should speak to their doctors as soon as possible.
Women with the following issues should speak to their doctors:
   irregular periods or no menstrual periods
   very painful periods
   pelvic inflammatory disease
   more than one miscarriage

Common Causes of Infertility
  • Severe endometriosis
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
  • Ovulation disorders
  • Elevated prolactin
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
  • Early menopause
  • Benign uterine fibroids
  • Pelvic adhesions
Assisted reproductive technology (ART)
In vitro fertilization (IVF)
Most effective
Recommended when both fallopian tubes are blocked
ART works best when the woman has a healthy uterus, responds well to fertility drugs, and ovulates naturally or uses donor eggs.
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