What in Infertility?

Infertility is a state when a couple is not able to conceive a child within one year of trying. It may also prevent a pregnancy from continuing. Infertility may be found in either males or females.

Symptoms
There are no specific signs or symptoms of infertility.  Few women may experience irregular menstrual periods or disorders that make menstruation or intercourse painful. Few men may also show symptoms of infertility, as a change in hair-growth pattern, breast enlargement, change of voice or difficulty obtaining or maintaining an erection.

Causes of infertility
Following are the causes of infertility in both men and women.

Causes of male infertility.  If the shape of the sperm is abnormal or movement is impaired, then it may not be able to reach the egg to fertilize it.

  • Absence of sperm production.
  • Low sperm concentration
  • Failure of one or both one or both testicles to descend from the abdomen into the scrotum during fetal development.
  • Deficiency of testosterone levels resulting from disorders of the testicles themselves or the glands in the brain that produce the hormones that control the testicles
  • Varicocele (varicose vein found in scrotum) may prevent proper cooling of the testicle and so prevents sperm from surviving
  • Abnormal development of the testicles including low or absent sperm production
  • Sexually transmitted diseases such as Chlamydia, gonorrhea,and syphilis  cause infertility in men because of scar tissue resulting in blockage of sperm passage
  • Mumps in adults
  • Inflammation of the prostate, urethra, or epididymis
  • Erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, painful intercourse or psychological stress
  • Blockage of the part of the testicle that contains sperm or the ejaculatory ducts
  • The presence of anti-sperm antibodies after a vasectomy
  • Cystic fibrosis, which may lead to an obstructed vas deferens
  • Severe or prolonged emotional stress may interfere with hormones needed for sperm production
  • Malnutrition leads to deficiencies in essential vitamins and minerals
  • Obesity or a relatively high body mass
  • Radiation and chemotherapy for cancer treatment
  • Excessive alcohol consumption and certain drugs, such as anabolic steroids, cocaine and even marijuana
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Aging
  • Exposure to chemicals used in common household materials
  • Elevated core body temperature from illness, hot tubs, and saunas can impair sperm production
  • Tobacco use

Causes of female infertility
Fallopian tube damage or complete blockage in which a woman

  • Endometriosis
  • Ovarian cysts sign of advanced endometriosis
  • Hormonal irregularities due to pituitary tumors, excessive exercise and anorexia nervosa
  • Premature menopause, due to the absence of menstruation and the depletion of ovarian follicles before age 35
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Radiation or chemotherapy
  • Tobacco use
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Pelvic adhesions due to abdominal or pelvic surgery, pelvic infection, appendicitis
  • Medications
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Cancer
  • Cushing disease
  • Sickle cell disease
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Kidney disease
  • Diabetes

Risk factors
  • For women fertility declines in early 30s and increases risk of miscarriage . For men, it reduces by their mid-30s.
  • Smoking decreases fertility and increases the risk of miscarriages
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Body mass greater than 25.00 and lower than 20.0
  • Being overweight or underweight