Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant after frequent, unprotected sex for a year. There can be many causes such as hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, stress and advancing age. Lifestyle factors such as overweight, underweight, environmental toxicity, tobacco use, alcohol use, caffeine consumption, being sedentary can all play a role. It can also be affected by female or male reproductive structure issue.
Female testing includes ovulation testing, hysterosalpingography, ovarian reserve testing and other hormone testing. Ovulation testing is a blood test that can determine whether the patient is ovulating while other hormone testing check levels of ovulatory hormones and pituitary hormones that control reproductive processes. Ovarian reserve testing determine the quality and quantity of the eggs available for ovulation
Male testing includes semen analysis, hormone testing, genetic testing and imaging
Treatment depends on the cause of infertility and the age of the patients. Medication can be used to improve male sperm count or induce ovulation in a woman.
Conventional fertility treatments such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF) or intra-uterine insemination (IUI) can be accessed through IVF clinics
Nutritional supplements can be used to improve the egg quality, improve sperm quality and support sperm health. Herbal supplements can be used to balance hormones.
Acupuncture can also be used to regulate the menstrual cycle, stimulate the function of the ovaries to produce better quality eggs and increase blood flow to the uterus leading to increased thickness of the uterine lining. For men, acupuncture can improve sperm quality and motility.
Mind-body therapy in addition to acupuncture aims to reduce stress and assist ovulation.