Infertility Basics

What is infertility?

Infertility means difficulty in becoming pregnant (conceiving) despite having regular sex when not using contraception. There is no definite cut-off point to say when a couple is infertile. Many couples take several months to conceive. Doctors usually suggest some tests if a couple have not conceived after one year, despite regular sexual intercourse after two years it is taken seriously and the treatment may be considered. Infertility can be due to a problem in the man or woman or many times it is due to problem in both.

Female infertility:

Although child birth is a natural process but some women have a hard time getting pregnant or staying pregnant. A women is diagnosed to have some infertility issues when she tries to get pregnant for a year without success. Women are also considered infertile if they have repeated miscarriages. In such cases a women should seek help of infertility specialist to go for assisted pregnancy.

Moreover if you have a history of following problems you should go for a discussion on pre-pregnancy health before starting to try to get pregnant:

  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Irregular periods
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Repeated miscarriages
  • Thyroid problems

The role of female partners in conceiving and giving birth to a child is much more in comparison to males. The female involvement in the process can be listed in following steps:

  • One of the two ovaries releases a mature egg.
  • The egg is picked up by the fallopian tube.
  • Sperm swim up the cervix, through the uterus and into the fallopian tube to reach the egg for fertilization.
  • The fertilized egg travels down the fallopian tube to the uterus.
  • The fertilized egg implants and grows in the uterus.

In women, a number of factors can disrupt this process at any step. Female infertility is caused by one or more of these factors.

Male infertility:

It’s always that a women, in a first screening, thought to be the cause in an infertile couple but it always not true. Since both the partners play equal role in child birth so both can be the cause for infertility individually or in participation.

It’s very essential that the men are tested too, if an infertile couple comes for help to a specialist. Mostly a male partner tries to avoid undergoing the process of diagnosis to avoid the social embarrassment, but early testing may spare their partners from undergoing many test process and can narrow down the possibilities by cutting down the various step involved in female partner's investigations.

In process of conceiving a child a male sperm should combine with the women's egg. Talking about the major steps involved, the testicles make and store sperm, which are ejaculated by the penis to deliver sperm to the female reproductive tract during sexual intercourse.

The most important causes of infertility in male partner are the conditions that effect the functioning of testicles, hormonal imbalance or blockage of male reproductive organs.


TB or Tuberculosis can be a cause of infertility only if it infects the Genital Tract of any human, this is very difficult to diagnose and is called GENITAL TB. It affects the fertility of a person by distorting the normal anatomy of the reproductive tract.

In males the genital passage gets blocked and the person becomes azoospermic i.e. no sperm enters the semen a condition called tuberculous epididymo-orchitis. While in woman, it causes tuberculous endomteritis where their is infection of the uterus and salpingitis where the infection is in tubes.

Now the treatment for genital TB is available with the help of a therapy known as Lymphocyte Immune therapy (LIT).

PCOS(Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome ):

Its basically a problem in women where a she suffers from high levels of androgens, Missed or irregular periods and Many small cysts in their ovaries.The individual may have increased hair growth, acne, obesity and Male-pattern baldness or thinning of hair.

In normal case when an egg grows, the follicle starts building up fluid and when the egg matures the follicle breaks open and the egg is released. Now the egg travels through the fallopian tube to uterus for fertilization. This normal process is called the process of ovulation. But, for a women suffering from PCOS the ovary does not make all the needed hormones required for an egg to mature completely. In such cases the follicle grow but ovulation is not completed, thus causing infertility.

Diagnosis: A specialist comes to know that you are suffering from PCOS by discussing your past medical history, examining you on the lavel of physical examination, pelvic examination, blood test for hormones and Vaginal Ultra Sonography.

Treatment:Infertility caused due to PCOS is curable, and it is treated by hormones, sometimes little surgery or IVF.

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