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In Vitro Fertilization in Patients with Low Egg Reserves

There are a number of reasons for the low ovarian reserve in women. Ovarian reserve may be low in women due to infertility problems, advancing age, menopause, premature menopause, ovarian diseases. In Vitro Fertilization in Patients with Low Egg Reserves Women with a low ovarian reserve are less likely In-vitro fertilization can be offered as an option to a woman with a low egg reserve. But the real problem here is the quality of the eggs and how mature they are. If the eggs are not of good quality, the chances of success almost disappears. In addition to age in women, ovarian reserve is of great importance for pregnancy. If high quality and mature eggs can not be collected from the mother after the necessary medication has been administered, the IVF treatment will fail.

Hormone medication can be given to make the eggs of the mother better and more mature. The medication treatment plan lasts approximately two weeks. At the end of the medication treatment plan the patient undergoes an egg collection. The more mature and better quality eggs that are harvested, the higher the chances are of pregnancy. Generally, the chances of pregnancy are gradually decreasing in women starting from the age of 30. As the woman ages so do her ovaries. Couples who want to have children need to act with consideration of their age, ovarian quality, etc.

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What are the most common causes of Infertility?

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), infertility is a social disease. Based on the estimate data, on average every tenth couple in the world has problems with conceiving a child.

With regular sexual intercourses, 84% women get pregnant in the first year, and 92% in total after 2 years. At present, a couple’s infertility is defined as the couple’s inability to conceive after 12 months of regular, unprotected sexual intercourse.

Improper Body Mass

Both underweight and obesity may influence the problems with getting pregnant. The most popular method of determining the proper body mass is the calculation of BMI based on body weight in relation to height of a given person. It is assumed that the permissible BMI value ranges between 18.5 and 24.5. Higher indices indicate overweight or obesity and lower ones indicate too small body mass. In both cases, improper body mass correlates with difficulties with conceiving a child. It is worth taking care of the health condition and proper body mass already at the stage of planning a pregnancy. Consultation with a dietician or paying more attention to nutritional choices may be advisable. Sometimes the situation requires a visit to a specialist who will verify whether the improper body mass is not related to other diseases, e.g. thyroid dysfunction.

Infections within urinary and reproductive organs

Recurrent, untreated or improperly treated infections within small pelvis, like adnexitis or cystitis may result in adhesions. These in turn are the cause of tubal occlusion and resulting difficulties with fertilisation.
Irregular menstruation
Regular menstruation – in the case of every woman – depends on the proper ovulation. It is considered that the proper menstruation cycle should last from 21-35 days. In such cycles, menstruation occurs at acceptably regular intervals. If the cycle is once longer, and another time shorter, and a woman cannot determine the approximate date of menstruation.
In the case of bleeding / spotting which occurs irregularly or between periods, a specialist in gynaecology should be consulted. Typically the doctor will recommend a panel of tests and determining the levels of hormones participating in the regulation of the menstrual cycle in order to diagnose the cause of the problem. The gynaecologist will also perform an ultrasonography and suggest the path of proceeding optimal for the patient’s medical situation.

Irregular menstrual cycles can often indicate a hormone imbalance and resulting ovulation disorders. They can be associated with thyroid diseases, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or luteal phase disorders. If ovulation does not process properly, problems with getting pregnant emerge.
Menstrual Pain/ Pain during intercourse
Pain during menstruation and also during sexual intercourse may indicate an inflammatory condition within the pelvis or be the symptom of endometriosis. Inflammatory conditions may result from bacterial or viral infection within reproductive organs and their vicinity (appendix, intestines) and lead to lesions hindering or preventing pregnancy.
Endometriosis
Endometriosis is a hormonal and immune condition occurring in girls and women in reproductive age. It is associated with the growth of the mucosal tissue of the uterus (endometrium) and its presence within the abdominal cavity. The endometrial cells produce mediators (chemical substances), which to significant extent affect negatively the process of ovulation, fertilisation and, later on, embryo implantation in the uterine cavity.

The cause of the problem is diagnosed on the basis of performed laboratory tests, examination of the bottom of the uterus and/or laparoscopy. When endometriosis is diagnosed, the therapy increasing the patient’s fertility is selected by the doctor – depending on the stage of the disease’s development and its severity.

Sometimes – where the course of the disease is mild or mild to moderate – the treatment consists in limiting the symptoms of the disease; in more problematic cases it may, however, require in vitro fertilisation.

Consequences of previous surgeries

The surgical treatments to which the patient was subjected, especially within the abdominal cavity, may lead to adhesions which cause tubal occlusion, a physical obstacle for a spermatozoon joining an oocyte.The examination allowing the diagnosis is fallopian tube patency evaluation by laparoscopy or ultrasound examination with a contrast agent administered to the reproductive tract. If serious abnormalities are confirmed, the doctor may suggest in vitro fertilization.

Anatomical abnormalities

Women planning pregnancy should visit a gynaecologist before they start trying to get pregnant. The doctor will assess the condition of reproductive organs during an ultrasound examination. Problems with conceiving a child can occur in connection with, for example, underdeveloped uterus or uterine septum, retroverted uterus or congenital tubal anomalies.
Metabolic disease
In case of diabetes or other metabolic diseases in the future mother, she should also consult the physician before starting trying to get pregnant. In some cases the consequences of disorders may have impact on the ability to get pregnant. Enhanced diagnostics and taking additional medical measures may be necessary.
Hyperprolactinaemia
Hyperprolactinaemia, the presence of abnormally high levels of prolactin in the blood, also can cause problems with conceiving a child. Prolactin is a hormone produced by the anterior pituitary gland, and its physiological function is the stimulation of mammary glands during pregnancy and lactation. Its abnormally increased level disrupts the proper functioning of the hormones taking part in the menstrual cycle. The symptoms of hyperprolactinaemia may include irregular menstruation, spotting, abdominal pain, dizziness or visual disturbance.Hyperprolactinaemia is diagnosed on the basis of tests determining the blood prolactin levels and in some cases on the results of supplementary MR imaging of the head and ophthalmic examination.

Immune system disorders

In the case of certain couples the woman’s body produces antibodies to her partner’s spermatozoa which damage and destroy them. Typically such situation is defined as the “hostile cervical mucus syndrome”. By performing the test after an intercourse in the Fertility Clinic, partners may check whether they will have problems causes by such situation. The immune system disorders may also be the cause of miscarriages; however in such cases the detailed diagnostics is necessary.

Male Factor
Despite the common access to information, there is still a common belief lingering on in society, and in particular in its male part, that infertility is primarily the women’s problem.
Studies indicate that in 50% the causes of difficulties with conceiving can be attributable to the male partner. Based on the observations of the medical clinics in the world, in couples facing infertility the treatment is commenced most often only by the woman. Her partner does not want to acknowledge that he also can be infertile. Men affected by the disease have more difficulties in coping with the information about their infertility and tend to blame others for their imperfections. The news about the problem more often results in the decrease of their self-esteem, apathy, alienation, sometimes even aggression towards their family.

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Male infertility , low sperm count, causes and treatments

About 35-40% of the problems among couples are caused by infertile conditions in men today. There are a number of treatment options available for male infertility.

The sperm must be healthy and strong to reach the egg and fertilize. The sperm of a man can tell a lot about his health. In the past two decades, overall sperm count for men around the world has declined by up to a third. The decline in the sperm count is because of lifestyle factors like consumption of alcohol and tobacco, overweight, lack of sleep and exposure to chemicals in daily life. A slight modification in the lifestyle can show a big change in the health of the sperm.

A man should make sure he has a happy, healthy lifestyle and a good relationship. It takes two to make a baby. Although a woman will carry and deliver the child, a man also has a leading role in pregnancy. For fertilisation to occur, his sperm must be healthy and strong enough to reach and penetrate the woman’s egg. If you and your partner are planning a pregnancy, you might be wondering about the health of your sperm. Start by understanding the various factors that can affect male fertility and then consider steps to help your sperm become top performers.

When men ejaculate, the purpose of their semen is probably the last thing on their minds, but it can serve a very important role in spotting changes in your well being. Usually, semen is a white or off white fluid. Any changes in colour or smell could be a sign of something more serious. Semen will usually have a chlorine type smell, but a strong foul smelling ejaculation could be a sign of infection. The amount of semen produced varies from man to man. However recurring low levels of watery semen could indicate a condition called retrograde ejaculation and though not harmful, it can cause fertility problems. If you spot any of these changes you should contact your GP or the Urologist. The condition of a man’s sperm can tell a lot about his general health.

Men are constantly looking for health markers that can help predict their risk for chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

A majority of guys out there may be surprised to find out that their semen is an invaluable tool when it comes to gauging their overall health. That’s right, a man’s semen can say a lot about his health. In the past two decades, overall sperm count for men around the world has declined by up to a third. The decline in the sperm count is attributed mainly to the following factors. Hypertension and High Blood Pressure Around 80 million adults in the United States have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, which can lead to potentially life-threatening complications if left untreated, including kidney damage, heart attack, and stroke.

A recent study conducted at the Stanford University School of Medicine found that the quality of a man’s semen could indicate his risk for hypertension. Research that included 9,387 men between the ages of 30 and 50 revealed that men struggling with fertility tend to have an increased risk for certain diseases of the circulatory system, including hypertension and heart disease. The relationship between semen quality and hypertension was tied to around 15 percent of all genes in the human genome that are connected to reproduction as well as other bodily systems. Cigarette Smoking and Overweight/Obesity in Men Evidence has consistently shown that smoking and obesity directly affect infertility in men. One study published in the journal Human Reproduction showed that a man with a greater body mass index (BMI) often has a lower sperm count and poor semen quality compared to a man with a lower BMI. Overweight and obese men have worse sperm quality than men of healthy weight. Being overweight or obese can also cause hormonal changes that reduce fertility and make men less interested in sex. Men who are very overweight are also more likely to have problems getting an erection. Together, these factors reduce the chances of men who are overweight or obese fathering a child. Cigarette smoking has a significant influence only on sperm count, percentage of active sperm and sperm morphology. The semen parameters in infertile men were significantly different from that of fertile men. The influence of body mass index on semen parameters was obvious except in percentage of immotile sperms. These results suggest that the chemical agents or mutagens may affect male reproductive via direct effect on the spermatogenesis.

Bisphenol A (BPA)BPA Exposure Fears over bisphenol A (BPA) exposure have resulted in the BPA-free movement. Researchers found that the men but not women with high phthalate concentrations experienced a 20% decline in fertility and took longer to get their partners pregnant than men with lower concentrations. BPA, an endocrine disrupting chemical with artificial estrogen properties, has been tied to disruptions in the hormonal system. Researchers from Washington State University recently discovered how BPA can increase a man’s risk for infertility. If a couple is having trouble getting pregnant, they should try to minimize the male’s exposure to phthalates. Phthalates are anti-androgens, and other studies have shown that environmental levels of phthalates in infertile men correlate with increased rates of sperm DNA damage, low sperm counts and abnormal sperm. Today male infertility is on the rise and male infertility is due to low sperm production, misshapen or immobile sperm, varicocele or blockages that prevent the delivery of sperm.

Effects of Alcohol Consumption If any men out there are looking for a litmus test to decide if they are drinking too much alcohol, their sperm could be the answer. Excessive alcohol lowers testosterone levels and sperm quality and quantity in men. It can also reduce libido, and cause impotence. If a man drinks heavily it can really reduce a couple’s chances of conceiving. However, if you reduce what you drink, these effects can be quickly reversed. The current recommended guidelines on safe drinking recommend no more than three to four units of alcohol per day. Drinking within these limits is unlikely to affect the quality of your sperm, so try to make this your maximum. Liver disease caused by excessive drinking also may lead to fertility problem

Insomnia and Lack of Sleep Lack of sleep is associated with some extremely negative health consequences, including heart disease, diabetes, obesity, depression, and even certain types of cancer. Yet another study out of Denmark has found that not getting enough sleep can also lower a man’s testosterone levels and sperm count. Men with insomnia, trouble getting to sleep early, and inconsistent sleep throughout the night had a sperm count that was, on average, 29 percent lower than men who had no trouble sleeping. Tests showed that their testicles were also significantly smaller, according to the study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Based on the overall youth and health of all the men involved in the study, the researchers were able to conclude that quality and duration of sleep has a big effect on sperm count, which determines male fertility.

The above lifestyle factors can easily be brought under control thereby increasing male sperm count and fertility. Along with healthy lifestyle, if proper balanced diet is taken it will help to a great extent in increasing the sperm count for men. Foods that Increase Sperm Count includes banana, dark chocolate, beef, walnuts, garlic, pomegranates, spinach, fruit salad, egg and water. The foods and fruits mentioned in can help your body in raising its sperm count and they can also improve the functioning of the sperms. These foods are also capable of improving fertility. So the basic fundamentals for male infertility is enjoying healthy lifestyle and good balanced diet.

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Trigger injection, What is it and how is it done ?

The purpose of using hormone drugs are to make the eggs become more mature and increase their quality, however the purpose of the trigger injection is to stimulate ovulation.

A treatment plan will be created by a fertility specialist or consultant that will give the mother a detailed medication plan that will cover about two weeks. The medication plan is commonly started on the 2nd or 3rd day of the mothers period.

The combination of the IVF hormones will increase the chances of pregnancy much more. During the two weeks of hormone therapy, scans take place so the specialist is able to watch and monitor the growth of the eggs. The eggs that come to the desired size then need to be collected via OPU or egg collection.

Mature eggs are triggered with a trigger injection and collected. The more mature and higher quality the eggs are will increases the chances of embryo formation and pregnancy after combining with the sperm.

The day, hour and construction of the injection should be done according to the advise of a specialist. There are posts, blogs and videos that are able to help and to show you how to correctly administer a trigger injection. It is extremely important that the injection is used correctly. This also goes of course for all of the hormone medication used in the mothers IVF treatment. Misuse of the injection can significantly reduce the success rate of treatment. And can prolong the process.

Read our blog on IVF in women with low egg reserves for more information on steps to take

Sperm Donation Steps

Sperm Donation Steps

Sperm Donation Steps

Sperm Donation Steps

Sperm Donation Steps; Men with insufficient sperm quality, numbness and mobility are unlikely to have children. Most males can not have a baby or reproduce because of serious problems like infertility. Sperm donation therapy can be applied to sperm failure so couples are able to have children.

Briefly, sperm donation is the method by which someone else has sperm and children. The sperm from the donor is combined with the eggs from the mother. Once it becomes an embryo, it is transferred to the mother. The next steps continue in the same way as normal pregnancy

Sperm Donation The Decision Making Phase

If you are not able to have children, you need to look at your reproductive cells. Experts recommend sperm donation if there are conditions such as poor sperm quality and motility in men. If you go to the specialist with the necessary tests, and you have decided to start treatment, the medication treatment for the mother is started on the second or third day of her period.

Drug treatment is given to the mother. This drug treatment is a hormone therapy and the goal is to mature the mother’s eggs and increase their quality. The medication takes approximately two weeks. When drug treatment is over, eggs are collected from the mother.

Once the eggs have been collected, they are taken to the lab where the Embryologists use the sperm from the donor, the sperm will contain the properties determined by the family,  the donor sperm is then merged with the eggs. Reproductive cells are left in a special container in the laboratory in a controlled environment to develop. The reproductive cells are transferred to the mother 3 or 5 days after they have developed and become embryos. The transfer step is easy and painless.

For more information on male infertility and its causes feel free to read our blog here

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