Female Infertility: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment

Female Infertility Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment
Table of Contents

Infertility is a complicated problem that affects millions of people worldwide. It is the inability to conceive. Although infertility is commonly thought to be a female-only issue, some variables can affect both partners. However, the percentage of infertility cases among females is quite large which makes it important to understand its causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and available treatments.

Understanding Female Infertility

Female infertility refers to the inability of a woman to get pregnant. This problem comes into consideration when a woman has been trying to get pregnant for a year without success.

To deal with infertility there are several treatment options such as IVF (In Vitro Fertilization), IUI (Intrauterine Insemination), ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection), etc.

Causes of Female Infertility

causes of female infertility

1. Ovulation Disorders

Women experience ovulation disorders due to hormonal imbalances factors, some are mentioned below:

  • PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome): It is a common hormonal disorder indicated by tiny ovarian cysts, irregular periods, and high levels of male hormones called as androgens.
  • Early Menopause: It is the condition in which ovaries stop functioning before the age of forty.
  • Severe Stress: Severe stress might disrupt ovulation, resulting in irregular or nonexistent menstrual cycles. Prolonged stress might delay ovulation and increase the difficulty of getting pregnant.

2. Fallopian Tube Damage

The damage in the fallopian tubes can stop sperm from reaching the egg or the fertilized egg from entering the uterus. Damage to the fallopian tube can be caused by the following reasons:

  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease: It happens when the uterus and fallopian tubes get infected because of STDs like gonorrhoea or chlamydia.
  • Prior abdominal or pelvic surgery, like that done for an ectopic pregnancy (where the fertilized egg implants and grows outside the uterus, often in a fallopian tube)

3. Endometriosis

When tissue that grows in the lining of the uterus grows outside of it, it can lead to endometriosis. Endometriosis can cause adhesions, scarring, and inflammation, which may obstruct fallopian tubes and stop the union of an egg and sperm.

4. Egg Quality and Egg Count

Women are born with a fixed number of eggs and keep using those eggs continuously from the moment of menstruation. Older women will have fewer and lower-quality eggs since the body will naturally choose and use the best eggs first. Some women who have less eggs in their bodies at birth will eventually run out. It is known that eggs from women who are older and have a reduced egg reserve may result in embryos with abnormal chromosome counts that inhibit implantation, increasing the risk of miscarriage and perhaps causing genetic problems for the developing fetus.

5. Environmental and Lifestyle Factors

Infertility also depends on the environmental and lifestyle factors:

  • Smoking: Smoking increases the risk of infertility and miscarriage, decreases ovarian reserve, and speeds up the ageing process of the ovaries.
  • Alcohol Consumption: Drinking too much alcohol might cause hormone imbalances, ovulation problems, and reduced fertility.
  • Obesity: Being obese can cause ovulatory dysfunction, insulin resistance, and hormonal abnormalities that ultimately result in infertility.
  • Toxins: Reproductive health may be negatively impacted by exposure to environmental toxins such as pesticides and pollution.

6. Uterine or Cervical Problem

The different uterine or cervical conditions can disrupt the egg’s ability to implant or increase the chance of miscarriage or infertility:

  • In the uterus, benign polyps, or tumours are common. Some can impact fertility by obstructing fallopian tubes or preventing implantation. However, a large number of women with polyps or fibroids do become pregnant.
  • Obstacles to getting pregnant or staying pregnant might arise from uterine abnormalities that exist from birth.
  • A hereditary deformity or injury to the cervix may result in cervical stenosis, a narrowing of the cervix.

Symptoms of Female Infertility

Symptoms of Female Infertility

Menstruation Irregularities

Heavy bleeding, irregular periods, or no menstruation at all may indicate underlying fertility problems, such as hormone imbalances or ovulation difficulties.

Painful Sexual Activity

Infertility-related disorders such as endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), and vaginal dryness can all cause dyspareunia or painful sex.

Hormonal Imbalances

Hormonal imbalances may be the cause of symptoms like hirsutism, excessive hair growth, acne, or unexplained weight gain. These imbalances can interfere with ovulation and conception.

Persistent Pelvic Pain

When pelvic discomfort persists for more than six months, it may indicate endometriosis, pelvic adhesions, or ovarian cysts, all of which can affect fertility.

Diagnosis of Female Infertility

Diagnosis of Female Infertility

If you and your partner haven’t been able to conceive after a year (or six months if you’re over 35), it’s advisable to consult a fertility specialist in Lucknow. Our experienced team at Vansh IVF Clinic can guide you through the process. During your initial consultation, our fertility specialists will do a thorough assessment, including:

  1. Ovulation Testing – Doctors use ultrasound to document the ovulation predictor kits, basal body temperature charting, and hormonal blood tests like progesterone levels (a hormone released after ovulation) to check if ovulation is occurring regularly. This kit can also be used at home to identify the rise in luteinizing hormone (LH) that occurs before ovulation.
  2. Ovarian Reserve Testing – Ovarian Reserve Testing helps in determining the number and calibre of eggs that are ready for ovulation. Women who are 35 years of age or older may experience this problem and require imaging and blood tests.
  3. Imaging Test – Different tests are used to diagnose infertility in women. These tests are described below:
    – Transvaginal Ultrasound (TVUS): During this technique, an ultrasonic instrument is inserted into the vagina to get detailed images of the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and uterus. TVUS helps in the identification of diseases that may affect fertility, such as ovarian cysts, uterine fibroids, and structural anomalies.
    – Magnetic Resonance Imaging(MRI): Doctors recommend this test to get more detailed pictures of the reproductive organs, particularly in complex cases.
    Sonohysterography: Sonohysterography is used to check the uterine cavity for abnormalities like fallopian tubal patency. It is often referred to as saline sonogram or saline infusion sonography (SIS). Saline, or sterile saltwater solution, is inserted into the uterus through a small catheter, and then a transvaginal ultrasound is conducted. It is also used to check for blockage in the fallopian tube.
  4. Hormone Testing – Other hormone tests measure the levels of pituitary and thyroid hormones, which regulate reproductive processes, as well as ovulatory hormones.
  5. Laparoscopy – Your doctor will insert a laparoscope, a camera monitoring device into a small abdominal incision. It helps in the detection of issues such as scar tissue, uterine fibroids, and endometriosis, as well as assessing the status of the fallopian tubes and any blockages.

Treatment for Female Infertility

Treatment for Female Infertility

Treatment for female infertility depends on the age, duration of infertility, and individual preferences. Due to the complexity of infertility, treatment necessitates large time and financial, physical, and psychological sacrifices. Treatments might either use advanced procedures to help you become pregnant or try to restore fertility through medication or surgery.

Medicines

Women with ovulation difficulties may be prescribed certain medicines. Doctors prescribe these fertility medicines to those women who experience irregular periods. It helps to improve the quantity and quality of eggs produced by imitating the actions of natural hormones such as FSH and LH to induce ovulation.

Surgical Procedures

Fertility can be increased by surgical techniques such as laparoscopic surgery to remove endometriosis lesions or hysteroscopic surgery to remove uterine fibroids or septa.

Assisted Reproduction Technologies (ART)

ART treatments, such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), which combines eggs and sperm in a lab, provide solutions for couples facing a variety of causes of infertility.

Changes in Lifestyle

Fertility can be maximized by leading a healthy lifestyle that includes eating a balanced diet, exercising frequently, controlling stress, and abstaining from dangerous habits like smoking and binge drinking.

Conclusion

fertility specialists in Lucknow

To sum up, the problem of female infertility is complex, with a range of underlying reasons and symptoms. Through knowledge of the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and available treatments, people can proactively address infertility issues and work towards becoming parents.

At Vansh Clinic and Test Tube Baby Center, we believe in offering you special care for your fertility needs. We will work closely with you to understand your unique needs and develop a treatment plan that offers you the best chance to have a baby.

Don’t wait to start your family planning journey. Contact Vansh IVF Clinic at 7408415995 today and schedule a consultation with Dr. Neelam Mishra, our fertility specialist in Lucknow. We’re here to help you achieve your dream of parenthood.

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