The causes of infertility can be due to something that affects the man or the woman, or both. If the problems are related to the woman this is called female factor infertility.
In our clinics in Trinidad, in over half the couples we see both the man and the woman have a fertility problem.
Things that might be a problem causing infertility for women are
- problems with the womb eg fibroids, polyps or a problem with implantation of the embryo
- problems with eggs eg poor quality eggs, absence of eggs or failure of the eggs to ovulate each month
- blockage or damage to the fallopian tubes
- medical conditions in the woman’s pelvic area that cause scar tissue or inflammation eg infections or endometriosis
- a general health problem for the woman that reduces fertility, eg diabetes, immune conditions and thyroid problems.
- Older age, which causes a lower number of good quality eggs
Age and fertility for women
For women one of the most important factors is age. In normal conditions, when a woman and man are healthy and younger than 35 years the chance of a pregnancy occurring each month is between 5-25%. As a woman gets older the chance of a pregnancy each month becomes lower because she has less eggs and these eggs are not such good quality.
By the age of 40 years pregnancy is becoming less common and it is almost impossible to achieve a pregnancy from the age of 45 years without using someone else’s eggs (donor egg IVF).