This week, in honor of National Infertility Awareness Week, I will be blogging about the facts of the disease of infertility. That’s right, disease. In fact, an article I read recently stated that it’s the 3rd most serious health condition after heart disease and cancer. Infertility affects 1 in 8 couples of reproductive age.
According to RESOLVE, infertility is a disease of the reproductive system. Infertility is often diagnosed after a couple has had one year of unprotected, well-timed intercourse, or if the woman has suffered from multiple miscarriages and the woman is under 35 years of age. If the woman is over 35 years old, it is diagnosed after 6 months of unprotected, well-timed intercourse. One-third (30%) of infertility can be attributed to male factors, and about one-third (30%) can be attributed to female factors. In about 20% of cases infertility is unexplained, and the remaining 10% of infertility is caused by a combination of problems in both partners.
My husband and I are in that small 10%.
There are many different risk factors that can contribute to infertility.
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)
- Tubal Disease
- DES Exposure
I struggle with PCOS and him with MFI (male factor infertility). We’ve been trying to get pregnant since we got married in November of 2011. We had a miscarriage in August of 2012 and in March of 2013 my OB prescribed Clomid, which hyperstimulated my ovaries (OHSS). I ended up needing emergency surgery to drain the cysts that had grown. In June, July and August of 2013 we went through medicated IUI cycles (one pretty heavily medicated), which were all unsuccessful. We are currently saving money for IVF through an online fundraiser – www.youcaring.com/munchkin-mcnabb – which our RE feels is likely the only way we will get pregnant.
There are often no signs or symptoms that will indicate a problem with fertility. But getting to know your body and understanding patterns it’s set will make that process easier. If you feel there is a problem, seek help right away.
This week I’ll discuss family building options and the emotions that come with this journey! I am so grateful for the awareness that is being raised and the opportunity that I have to take part in it!!
http://www.resolve.org/infertility101 (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)