March 14, 2022
There are many treatments that can combat infertility. Becoming parents is one of the most important moments in the lives of any couple. However, not all couples find this as an easy path.
Let’s start by understanding what infertility is and how it develops in each person. Understanding the situation is important to know how to find the best solution for each couple.
What is infertility?
Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having frequent, unprotected sex for at least a year for most couples. It may result from an issue with either you or your partner, or a combination of factors that prevent pregnancy.
We can focus on two types of infertility and call them ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’. The primary occurs when gestation occurs, but does not reach term to give birth. The secondary occurs when a successful delivery has previously been achieved, but has not been reached a second time.
What are the possible causes?
There are several factors that could cause infertility, both in men and women.
Causes in men:
- Pretesticular factor, that is, alterations in the hormones that stimulate the testicle.
- There is also the testicular factor, that is, genetic, congenital or acquired conditions of the testicle.
- Posttesticular factor, refers to obstructions in the spermatic pathway that affect the sperm when they leave the testicle.
- Azoospermia, the lack of sperm in the sperm.
- Inability to ejaculate due to diseases such as diabetes or taking various medications.
- If you have undergone prostate or urethral surgery.
Causes in women:
- Autoimmune disorders such as antiphospholipid syndrome.
- Cancer or tumors
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Eating disorders or malnutrition
- Growths, such as fibroids or polyps, in the uterus and cervix
- Hormonal imbalances
- Being overweight or underweight
- Advanced age
What solutions exist to treat infertility?
Currently there are a number of treatments focused on helping the couple to have a successful pregnancy. Also, it is worth mentioning that the chosen procedure will depend on what has caused the infertility.
There are these three main treatments:
- Artificial insemination: this consists of depositing semen, either from the man or from a donor, in the woman’s egg. This process is carefully carried out in the laboratory using a fine cannula.
- In vitro fertilization and sperm microinjection: it consists of extracting several egg cells through a hormonal treatment of ovarian stimulation. Once extracted, they join the sperm. These egg cells may be used fresh or vitrified in the event that they have been extracted at another time.
- Egg donation: a donated egg is required to try to get pregnant. This is because many women have non-viable eggs, either due to age or genetic diseases.
Dr Alvaro Ascenzo is our Specialist in finding solutions for infertility