What Causes Infertility In Men and Women

If you thought only women are concerned about infertility, think again
Causes of Infertility In Men
From a semen analyses, a specialist can evaluate the number of sperm (concentration), the movement of sperm (motility), and their shape (morphology) to determine whether abnormalities in a husband's sperm is contributing to the infertility of his wife.
Conditions that can cause Abnormal Semen Analyses include:
Varicoceles are enlarged veins on a male's testicles that cause them to overheat and affect the number and shape of the sperm.
Medical conditions such as diabetes, cystic fibrosis, trauma, infection, testicular failure, or treatment with chemotherapy or radiation.
Unhealthy habits such as heavy alcohol use, testosterone supplementation, smoking, anabolic steroid use, and illicit drugs use.
Environmental toxins including pesticides and lead.
Causes of Infertility In Women
To get pregnant a woman needs normal functioning ovaries, fallopian tubes and uterus. Abnormality in any of these organs can cause infertility.
Ovarian Function
Ovulation occurs when the ovary releases a matured egg into the fallopian tube to be fertilized by a male sperm. This occurs on average 12-14 days before the menstrual period. Certain abnormalities can interrupt normal ovarian function including:
1. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
2. Functional hypothalamic amenorrhea (FHA)
3. Diminished ovarian reserve (DOR)
4. Premature ovarian insufficiency (POI)
5. Menopause
Fallopian Tube Patency
This procedure determines whether the fallopian tubes are opened, blocked or swollen. Risk factors for a blocked fallopian tube (tube occlusion) include a history of:
1. Pelvic infection
2. Raptured appendicitis
3. Gonorrhea and chlamydia
4. Known endometriosis
5. Abdominal surgery
Uterine Contour
This procedure evaluates the physical characteristic of the uterus to look for fibroids and other anatomical abnormalities such as endometriosis, which can interfere with the proper functioning of the uterine cavity where the fertilized egg is implanted for pregnancy to occur.
Lifestyle Problems including:
1. Smoking
2. Heavy alcohol use
3. Extreme weight gain or loss
4. Abnormal physical or emotional stress, resulting in amenorrhea (absent periods)
A Woman's Age
Aging decreases a woman's chances of getting pregnant in these ways:
1. Her ovaries become less able to release eggs
2. She has fewer eggs left
3. Her eggs are not as healthy
4. She may have health conditions that can cause fertility problems
5. She is more likely to have a miscarriage

Research Source: The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

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