When a couple is trying to get pregnant for 6 months-1 year and have been unsuccessful, chances are that one of the partners is infertile. In the case of female infertility, there are several causes and risk factors.
Learn all about the causes of infertility in women and how to check for female infertility to find the best solution to help you become parents and welcome your bundle of joy into the world.
What are The Causes of Infertility in Females?
There are multiple causes of female infertility. Understanding the exact causal factor is the first step towards finding treatment options and solutions to get pregnant. The several causes of female infertility are as follows:
#1. Issues Related to Ovulation
- PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome leads to hormonal imbalances that can affect the ovulation. This is one of the most common causal factors.
- The thyroid gland is unable to regulate the production of Follicle Stimulating Hormone and Luteinizing Hormone, which are responsible for ovulation.
- An autoimmune response in women under 40 leads to premature ovarian failure makes the ovary incapable of producing any eggs.
- Excessive production of prolactin reduces estrogen levels leading to infertility.
#2. Issues Related to the Fallopian Tube
- Fallopian Tubes that are blocked or damaged do not allow the fertilized egg to pass into the uterus, leading to infertility.
- The causes for this condition include infections of the fallopian tube or uterus, surgery-related complications, and pelvic tuberculosis, which is one of the most common causes of infertility in women.
- The tissues growing in the uterus implants itself in other locations and begins to grow. This condition, called endometriosis, affects the lining of the uterus making it difficult for the implantation of the fertilized egg.
- While the excess tissue can be removed surgically, it can lead to scars, which cause other complications.
- This condition may also indirectly affect fertility by damaging the eggs and the sperms.
#4. Issues Related to the Uterus and Cervix
- Formation of benign tumors or polyps in the uterus can block the fallopian tube causing infertility.
- Uterine abnormalities such as an abnormal shape of the uterus can cause infertility.
- The cervix is dry making it difficult for the sperms to pass into the uterus.
- A condition called cervical stenosis leads to narrowing of the cervix. This can be genetic and can even be caused by any damage to the cervix.
Unknown Factors of Infertility in Women
In many cases, finding the exact causal factor for infertility is challenging. This is because a number of smaller factors such as stress and poor nutrition may lead up to infertility. Even in these cases, it is possible to find solutions to help the couple conceive.
There are several factors that increase the risk of infertility such as the age of the woman, lifestyle, weight and sexual history that also need to be taken into consideration when diagnosing the condition.
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How is it Diagnosed and Infertility Test?
The next step is to understand how to check for female infertility. This is done with the assistance of a doctor using the following steps:
- A physical examination is conducted.
- A detailed medical and sexual history of both partners is recorded.
- The third step is to check if the woman is ovulating. This can be done with blood tests and an ultrasound. Maintaining a record of the morning body temperature and cervical mucus for a couple of months can also indicate the same. A home ovulation test kit can also be used.
- If ovulation is normal, the doctor will take an x-ray of the fallopian tubes and the uterus. This method, called hysterosalpingography, requires a dye to be injected into the uterus through the cervix. The movement of the dye determines if there are any blockages or damage in the fallopian tubes.
- The other option to check for infertility is a laparoscopy. This surgical procedure allows the doctor to look into the abdomen. A small tool called the laparoscope is inserted into the abdomen through a small cut in the lower abdomen. This allows the doctor to check the ovaries, uterus, and the fallopian tubes for any scarring or disease.
What Are the Possible Solutions and Treatment?
There are several factors that determine how infertility is treated. This includes the results of the several tests conducted, the age of the couple and the overall health of the partners. There are solutions of female fertility based on the causal factor as mentioned below:
- Fertility medication is provided to women who have issues related to ovulation.
- In the case of blockages or scarring, surgical methods are used to correct them.
- If the treatments are not responsive, doctors may recommend assisted reproductive technology or artificial insemination as options to conceive.
- These treatment procedures are often accompanied by behavioral therapy as they can be very emotionally challenging for the couple.
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