Infertility has become quite common in both men and women these days. There has been a 20-30 percent rise in the cases of infertility in last five years in India as per the recent study. Infertility is a complex process and determining the root cause of it involves a lot of medical research and investigations. It is no longer confined to women only and no more it is a disorder of urban population only. There are several factors leading to infertility. Now a day’s our modern lifestyle is supposed to be the topmost cause of infertility.Before coming to the main causes we must know the exact meaning of infertility.
What is Infertility?
Infertility is a medical condition where a woman is unable to conceive or unable to carry a pregnancy to full term. In general, we can say that when a woman is not able to get pregnant after one year or longer of unprotected sex then it can be termed as infertility.There are many biological or physiological factors leading to infertility. Infertility is of two types.
Types of infertility: Infertility is divided into two parts:
- Primary infertility 2. Secondary infertility
Primary infertility refers to those who have never been able to get pregnant or conceive a child at least after 1 year of regular unprotected sex. Also, women’s having regular miscarriages or whose pregnancy results in a stillborn child are referred to have primary infertility.
Secondary infertility refers to those couples who are now unable to conceive after getting conceive already once.
Causes of Infertility
To get pregnant ovulation and fertilization should occur in proper order. The issue in this cycle can result in infertility in couples. In general infertility causes can affect both male and female.
Causes of female infertility
Causes of female infertility may include:
Ovulation disorders: These affect the ovulation. This results in PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) which is a hormonal disorder. Hyperprolactinemia is also one condition which can interfere with the process of ovulation. Increase in levels of prolactin results in this disorder.Both hyper and hypothyroidism can cause infertility as these affect the menstruation. An intensive form of exercise, anorexia or any other form of injury can also interfere with ovulation.
Disorders of uterus or cervical: This includes abnormalities with the opening of the cervix. Presence of Benign tumors and fibroids in the uterine can result in blockage of the tubes and interferes with fertilization of egg and embryo formation. This results in infertility.
Damage or Blockage in the Fallopian tube: The inflammation in the fallopian tube can result in infertility.Endometriosis or adhesions are sexually transmitted infections which can result in inflammatory disease leading to infertility.
Endometriosis: This is the condition in which growth of tissues take place outside of the uterus lining affecting the normal functioning of the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes.
Pelvic adhesions: In this condition, the bands of scar tissue causes the internal organs to stick together in the pelvic area resulting in pelvic pain. Previous surgical procedures can also lead to adhesions. Adhesion can block or distort the fallopian tube resulting in infertility.
Early Menopause or ovarian insufficiency: In this condition, menstruation cycle ends before the age of 40 and ovaries stop working and. The exact cause is unknown. Diseases of the immune system, smoking, certain genetic disorders and radiation treatment or chemotherapy treatment are certain factors which can result in early menopause.
Other causes are as under:
Cancer disease and its treatment: Radiation and other therapies such as chemotherapy done during cancer treatment may affect ovulation. Cancer particularly reproductive cancer can be a cause of infertility.
Other conditions such absence of menstrual cycle, delayed puberty, diabetes, and genetic disorders can lead to infertility.
Causes of male infertility
Causes of male infertility may include:
Low sperm count: This can be due to undescended testicles. Health disorders such as diabetes, genetic defects or due to infections such as gonorrhea, mumps, chlamydia, or HIV. Quality of sperm can be affected by enlarged veins in the testes.
Sperm transport disorder: This occurs due to premature ejaculation; genetic diseases, or due to blockage in the testicle. Injury to the reproductive organs can also result in this disorder.
Sexual disorder: Erectile disorders, spinal cord injury, prostate surgery, premature ejaculation, Failure of ejaculation can result in sexual disorders leading to infertility.
Cancer disease and related treatment: This includes radiation or chemotherapy which can impair sperm production and it can be severe in some cases.
Environmental factors: Overexposure to pesticides, chemicals and radiation can result in infertility. Consuming alcohol and smoking can also affect fertility. Frequent exposure to heat may affect sperm production.
Though the exact causes of infertility are difficult to determine with early treatment and diagnosis the chances of conceiving increases. There are several techniques available to diagnose and treat the causes of infertility and thereby leads to fertility.Leave a reply →