Infertility & Subfertility

Infertility is defined as the failure to conceive after 12 months of regular unprotected intercourse.  Secondary infertility refers to couples who have been pregnant at least once but have not been able to become pregnant again.


Subfertility means decreased fertility or a decreased chance of getting pregnant, but not a complete inability to get pregnant.


Someone who is described as being subfertile still has a good chance of getting pregnant on their own, but it may take longer than others.


The causes of infertility can include a range of physical or emotional factors or a combination of both.




Female infertility may be due to:

  • The fertilized egg or embryo being unable to survive once it is attached to the lining of the uterus
  • The fertilized egg being unable to attach to the lining of the uterus
  • The eggs being unable to move from the ovary to the uterus
  • The ovaries may not be producing eggs
  • The presence of fibroids or polyps
  • Hormone imbalance or deficiencies
  • Ovarian cysts and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
  • Pelvic infection or pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
  • Excessive exercising, eating disorders, or poor nutrition
  • Consumption of certain medications in the past or present
  • Exposure to toxins
  • Heavy use of alcohol
  • Long-term (chronic) disease, such as diabetes
  • Obesity




Male infertility may be due to:

  • A decrease in the number of sperm
  • Sperm being blocked from being released
  • Reduced mobility of sperm

Male infertility can be caused by:

  • Exposure to high heat for prolonged periods, regular jacuzzi or hot tub use or even hot steamy baths before lovemaking can reduce sperm count
  • Impotence
  • Heavy use of alcohol, marijuana, or cocaine
  • Hormone deficiency or taking too much of a hormone
  • Previous scarring due to infection (including sexually transmitted diseases), trauma, or surgery
  • Radiation exposure
  • Surgery or trauma
  • Use of prescription drugs
  • Smoking
  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Infections of the testes
  • Older age
  • Previous chemotherapy
  • Environmental pollutants


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