Infertility FAQ

Does a woman’s age affect her chances of getting pregnant?

Yes, a woman’s fertility diminishes with age. It is advisable to attempt to get pregnant for the first time before 30. After a year of trying to get pregnant, in women up to 35, we suggest starting an infertility study. If the patient is 35 or older, the infertility study will be initiated sooner, within 6 months of trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant.

What’s the difference between sterility and infertility?

The dictionary considers these terms to be synonymous. Amongst the European scientific community, including Spain, sterility is understood as the impossibility of getting pregnant via natural conception, while the term ‘infertility’ is reserved for couples with difficulties getting pregnant, or, if pregnancy is obtained, the difficulty in bringing it to term.

Are infertility problems frequent? How about sterility?

Between 15 and 20 per cent of couples of reproductive age have infertility problems.

If my periods are regular, does it mean I don’t have fertility problems?

No. You can have regular menstrual cycles without ovulation. Or, even having normally functioning ovaries, there can be other female causes.

Can semen analysis determine whether a man is fertile?

A normal semen analysis allows access to any assisted reproduction technique (ART) although it’s always advisable to carry out a complete study of the male with a visit to an andrologist to rule out other pathologies.

What happens when the male is sterile?

Male sterility is the lack of spermatozoids in sperm (azoospermia). Faced with this situation, the andrologist must diagnose the cause of the azoospermia. Once this is diagnosed, we can recommend the adequate treatment.

Is infertility the man’s problem or the woman’s?

In 20 per cent of the couples who undergo a fertility study, we don’t find a specific cause, and they are known as couples with unexplained sterility. Amongst the remaining couples, in 25 per cent of cases we discover possible causes in both members of the couple, mixed cause infertility. In the rest of couples who have undergone the study, we find one or several causes of sterility only in the male or only in the woman. Statistics show equal figures, that is, 50 per cent are purely male factors, and the other 50 per cent are purely female factors.

What is fertilization?

Once the sperm has penetrated the egg, we call the process which takes place inside the egg fertilization, when the chromosomes provided by the sperm pair with those of the egg, creating an embryo from a cell or zygote.

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