For women who have mastered the ovulation cycle, evening rendezvous and afternoon quickie, it can be frustrating when after months of trying, you still can’t get pregnant. With 6.7 million women struggling with infertility, science has been working tirelessly to shed some light on this far-too common issue.
Here, we’ll discuss the 3 most common causes of infertility in women and what exactly the white coats are doing to ensure it doesn’t continue to impact the baby makers of the future.
(And gentlemen, we haven’t forgotten about you. Check out these articles on causes of male infertility to learn more about getting your sperm in top shape.)
Endometriosis is a difficult condition where cells that would normally grow within the uterus start to grow on other parts of the reproductive system, such as the ovaries. Apart from causing excruciating pain and menstrual abnormalities, the increased stress on the reproductive system makes getting pregnant that much more difficult.
Luckily, the scientific research community has launched several initiatives to discover not only how to increase the chances of pregnancy for those currently affected by it, but also how to avoid these causes of infertility in women all together.
Since the likelihood of infertility is directly related to the amount and location of excess cell growth, it's critical to be proactive and detect endometriosis early. Thanks to science and advanced imaging capabilities, a simple and non-invasive test will soon become part of a regular gynecological exam and uncover this condition before it gets the chance to hinder fertility in the future.
In addition to early detection research, doctors have identified a particular protein, Hand2, which tells the body to stop creating a uterine lining once a woman gets pregnant.
Why is this significant? Typically with endometriosis, there is a dysfunctional mutation or imbalanced amount of this particular protein that causes abnormal uterine cell growth, or no growth at all. If you can control the protein, you control the lining both inside and out of its designated play area, eliminating the condition all together. Research is ongoing, but is still extremely promising in unraveling this causes of infertility in women.
Caused by a hormonal imbalance resulting from a variety of potential causes, PCOS has a vicious reputation of making getting pregnant feel like climbing Everest. So what is being done to cure this most common cause of infertility in women?
Luckily researchers know a great deal about which organs are involved and where the problems are. Now, they are on a quest to try and test the function of the adrenal gland as well as identifying a whole slew of hormones that may be just as guilty in causing infertility. A new study has shown that genetic makeup and pituitary gland disorders have provided more accurate diagnoses and individualized treatment for women on a case-by-case basis. No woman is alike, and with this groundbreaking research, each woman can receive the tailored care she needs to have the highest levels of success.
Menopause: we are all familiar with what it is and have seen many women suffer from its many effects as they enter into their Golden Years. However, for women with POI, a menopause-like state comes much earlier than anticipated -- usually causing a woman to experience menopause symptoms in their 20s or 30s. POI can cause thyroid dysfunction, brittle bones and infertility.
Researchers have discovered that POI is often times caused by an autoimmune response where the body attacks the ovarian proteins (called MATER) responsible for allowing fertilization and proper cell division. There has been some success with using antibodies to retrain the MATER so that women with this type of POI might be able to achieve pregnancy. This would allow women to keep their own eggs for future In-Vitro Fertilization, versus the current process of IVF with donor eggs. Although this is currently a common cause of infertility in women, POI has promise to be resolved in the future.
As serious scientific breakthroughs unravel the common causes of infertility in women, and with treatment and the right tools, women are beginning to see more and more success.
When sex feels more like a rendezvous and less like a prescribed process, you’re more likely to keep at it. With Astroglide TTC, science provides couples trying to conceive a lubricant specifically designed to be sperm friendly, pH balanced and as natural as possible to allow sperm to move freely on their journey. Despite experiencing obstacles, you’ll still be able to look forward to your time in the bedroom.
What do you think of these commons causes of infertility in women? Are there any you want to know more about or have experience with? Let us know by tweeting us @AstroglideTTC.