Infertility means the inability to conceive even after 12 months of unprotected sex. It causees wary both in male and female . If a couple fails to conceive after 1 year of ‘unprotected’ and regular intercourse, there is an indication to investigate the couple. This is based on the observation that 80% of normal couples achieve conception within a year. It is observed that 50% conceive within 3 months of regular, unprotected intercourse, 75% in 6 months and 80–85% conceive within a year. Infertility is termed primary if conception has never occurred, and secondary if the patient fails to conceive after having achieved a previous conception. The incidence of infertility in any community varies between 5 and 15%.
Male Causes of fertility :-
Low sperm count:- The man ejaculates a low number of sperm. A sperm count of under 15 million is considered low. Around one third of couples have difficulty conceiving due to a low sperm count.
Low sperm mobility (motility):- The sperm cannot "swim" as well as they should to reach the egg.
Abnormal sperm:- The sperm may have an unusual shape, making it harder to move and fertilize an egg.
If the sperm do not have the right shape, or they cannot travel rapidly and accurately towards the egg, conception may be difficult. Up to 2 % Trusted Source of men are thought to have sub-optimal sperm. Abnormal semen may not be able to carry the sperm effectively.
A medical condition:- Testicular infection, cancer, or surgery.
Over heated testicles:- undescended testicle, a varicocele, or varicose vein in the scrotum, wearing tight clothes, and working in hot environments.
Ejaculation disorders:- If the ejaculatory ducts are blocked, semen may be ejaculated into the bladder.
Hormonal imbalance:- Hypogonadism, can lead to a testosterone deficiency.
Genetic factors :- A man should have an X and Y chromosome. If he has two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome, as in Klinefelter's syndrome, the testicles will develop abnormally and there will be low testosterone and a low sperm count or no sperm.
Mumps :- If this occurs after puberty, inflammation of the testicles may affect sperm production.
Hypospadias :- The urethral opening is under the penis, instead of its tip. This abnormality is usually surgically corrected in infancy. If the correction is not done, it may be harder for the sperm to get to the female's cervix. Hypospadias affects about 1 in every 500 newborn boys.
Cystic fibrosis:- This is a chronic disease that results in the creation of a sticky mucus. This mucus mainly affects the lungs, but males may also have a missing or obstructed vas deferens. The vas deferens carries sperm from the epididymis to the ejaculatory duct and the urethra.
Radiation therapy:- This can impair sperm production. The severity usually depends on how near to the testicles the radiation was aimed.
Some diseases:- Anemia, Cushing's syndrome, diabetes, and thyroid disease.
Chemotherapy:- Some types may significantly reduce sperm count.
Illegal drugs:- Consumption of marijuana and cocaine can lower the sperm count.
Age :- Male fertility starts to fall after 40 years.
Exposure to chemicals:- Pesticides, may increase the risk.
Excess alcohol consumption:- This may lower male fertility. Moderate alcohol consumption has not been shown to lower fertility in most men, but it may affect those who already have a low sperm count.
Overweight or obesity: This may reduce the chance of conceiving.
Mental stress: Stress can be a factor, especially if it leads to reduced sexual activity.
Female causes of infertility :-
Age:- The ability to conceive starts to fall around the age of 32 years.
Smoking:- Smoking significantly increases the risk of infertility in both men and women, and it may undermine the effects of fertility treatment. Smoking during pregnancy increases the chance of pregnancy loss. Passive smoking has also been linked to lower fertility.
Alcohol:- Any amount of alcohol consumption can affect the chances of conceiving.
Being obese or overweight:- This can increase the risk of infertility in women as well as men.
Eating disorders:- If an eating disorder leads to serious weight loss, fertility problems may arise.
Diet:- A lack of folic acid, iron, zinc,
Mental stress: This may affect female ovulation and male sperm production and can lead to reduced sexual activity.
Ovulation disorders appear to be the most common cause of infertility in women. Ovulation is the monthly release of an egg. The eggs may never be released or they may only be released in some cycles.
Premature ovarian failure:-The ovaries stop working before the age of 40 years.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS):- The ovaries function abnormally and ovulation may not occur .
Hyperprolactinemia:- If prolactin levels are high, and the woman is not pregnant or breastfeeding, it may affect ovulation and fertility.
Poor egg quality:- Eggs that are damaged or develop genetic abnormalities cannot sustain a pregnancy. The older a woman is, the higher the risk.
Thyroid problems:- An overactive or underactive thyroid gland can lead to a hormonal imbalance.
Adis or cancer .
Problems in the uterus or fallopian tubes can prevent the egg from traveling from the ovary to the uterus, or womb. If the egg does not travel, it can be harder to conceive naturally.
Surgery:- Pelvic surgery can sometimes cause scarring or damage to the fallopian tubes. Cervical surgery can sometimes cause scarring or shortening of the cervix. The cervix is the neck of the uterus.
Submucosal fibroids:- Benign or non-cancerous tumors occur in the muscular wall of the uterus. They can interfere with implantation or block the fallopian tube, preventing sperm from fertilizing the egg. Large submucosal uterine fibroids may make the uterus' cavity bigger, increasing the distance the sperm has to travel.
Endometriosis:- Cells that normally occur within the lining of the uterus start growing elsewhere in the body.
Previous sterilization treatment:- In women who have chosen to have their fallopian tubes blocked, the process can be reversed, but the chances of becoming fertile again are not high.
Investgation for male infertility :-
Semen analysis:- A sample may be taken to test for sperm concentration, motility, color, quality, any infections, and whether any blood is present. Sperm counts can fluctuate, so that several samples may be necessary.
Blood test:- levels of testosterone and other hormones.
Ultrasound:- Issues such as ejaculatory duct obstruction or retrograde ejaculation.
Investgation for female infertility:-
Blood test:- CBC, ESR, Prolactine ,Hormone’s levels and whether a woman is ovulating.
Ovarian reserve testing
Pelvic ultrasound, the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries.
Hormonal balance :- Thyroid function test, FSH (follicle stimulating test), LH ( luteinizing hormone), Progesterone ect.
HOMOEOPATHY FOR INFERTILITY –
Homoeopathy is a most morden system which can cure the disease from the root. Homoeopathy is based on symptom similarity and by constitutional medicine we can even treat infertility of unknown etiology also, here an attempt is made to convey the approach of Homoeopathy in infertility and its common causes.