Infertility is the incompetence to get pregnant after a year of unprotected intercourse. Both male and female can be responsible for infertility. Talking about infertility in women, female infertility treatment is vital for them who are trying to get pregnant but are still unsuccessful despite for more than a year of unprotected intercourse. Therefore it is vital for couples to seek proper medical assistance.
How does age affect fertility in Women?
Women are born with a finite number of eggs. Thus, as the reproductive years progress, both the number and the quality of the eggs diminish. It has been estimated that the chances of having baby decease by 3% to 5% per year after the age of 30 years. This reduction in fertility is noted to a much greater extent after the age of 40.
Infertility Causes- Leads to Female Infertility Treatment
Female infertility leads various health problems. Some of the female infertility causes are:
- Damage to fallopian tubes: Fallopian tubes carry eggs from the ovaries to the uterus, if damaged, it prevents the contact between the egg and the sperm. Some important diseases and surgeries such as – pelvic infections, endometriosis, and pelvic surgeries may lead to scar formation and can damage the fallopian tube as well.
- Improper hormonal changes: Many women suffer from various problems during ovulation, the most common being when the release of an egg from the ovary and thickening of the endometrium (lining of the uterus) in the preparation for the fertilized egg do not occur. The problems may be detected using body temperature charts, ovulation predictor kits and blood tests to detect hormone levels.
- Cervical problems: Some women have a cervical condition in which the sperm cannot pass through the cervical canal. This is because of the production of mucus or a previous surgical procedure performed on that area cause blockage.
- Epileptic: According to research conducted, reproductive abnormalities and infertility are two or three times more common in Epileptic females. This is because epileptic seizures can lead to an increase in the serum prolactin level and fluctuation in women’s reproductive hormones. Around 50% of the female population are reported to suffer from menstrual abnormalities and higher frequency of irregular ovulation cycle that adversely lead to pregnancy problems or infertility. New method of female infertility treatment can help to avert the pregnancy problems or complications.
- Endometriosis: It occurs when the endometrial tissue implants and grows outside of the uterus, affecting the function of the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes, as a result, leads to pregnancy complications and is one of the major female infertility causes.
- Uterine fibroids: In this case, the structure of the uterus is not hospitable for the foetus. This is caused by the presence of Polyps and fibroids. Their abnormal growth can affect around 70-80% women who are above the age of 50 years. Uterine fibroids are noncancerous lumps that develop in or outside a woman’s uterus (womb) leading heavy bleeding during pregnancy, an urge to frequent urination, painful sex, and infertility in women.
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): It is a condition caused by imbalanced hormones in the reproductive system of females resulting in the decrease in the egg production and thus reduces the chance of getting pregnant.
- Unexplained reasons: An unexpected infertility is when the causes are not clearly defined or identifiable that happens in 20% of the infertility cases. More advanced methods of female infertility treatment are required to diagnose and analyse such other cases like this.
Diagnosing Female Infertility
- Blood tests: Several blood tests are helpful in detecting a number of potential causes of infertility such as abnormal hormonal levels, presence of cystic ovaries, cervical problems, etc.
- Laparoscopy: This procedure involves looking at the outside lining of the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tube by inserting a fiber-optic camera attached to a thin tube through an incision near the belly button. Laparoscopy helps doctors to look for abnormal growth in the pelvic region especially in the case of endometriosis which is caused due to the formation of endometriotic tissues in other parts of the body.
- Hysterosalpingography (HSG): An HSG involves inserting a dye or saline into the cervix through X- ray or ultrasound in order to check the blockage of the fallopian tubes.
Female Infertility Treatment
- Assisted Reproductive Technology or ART: It is one of the best-known treatment options available. This technology is performed through the combination of fertility drugs and hormonal therapy. Other types of tests include gamete intra- fallopian transfer, In Vitro fertilization, intrauterine insemination, and zygote intrafallopian transfer.
- In Vito fertilization: It is a comprehensive and highly advanced procedure in order to assist the sperm and the egg. IVF is a technique of artificial insemination in which the egg and sperm are combined outside the body and then placed in the uterus after the formation of the embryo. The procedure was first introduced in 1981 and has been successfully used to give birth to over 200,000 babies. The drug called Clomiphene or Clomid and Serophene are highly recommended treatments for infertility problems.
- Medical therapy: Special drugs can be given to women facing problems with ovulation. Gonadotropins are also used in case of unexplained infertility.
- Intrauterine insemination: It is another procedure which uses a small amount of concentred sperm cells. This is a painless process and takes few minutes to accomplish.
- Egg donation: Egg donation involves the removal of Oocytes from the ovary of a woman who has taken fertility drugs for ovarian stimulation.
- ZIFT and GIFT: In zygote intrafallopian transfer or ZIFT, the fertilized eggs are placed in the uterus of the mother after IVF within 24 hours, while in Gamet intrafallopian tube transfer (GIFT), the sperm and eggs are mixed before insertion.
- Surrogacy: In surrogacy, the surrogate mother is inseminated with the sperm from the recipient’s partner. The surrogate mother then carries the baby and delivers it on the behalf of the recipient.
To conclude, female infertility treatment is indeed a necessity for women who urge to get pregnant and want to start their own family.