What causes infertility?
An increasing number of couples are facing involuntary infertility. In Finland, some 3,000 couples seek medical help for infertility annually.
The cause of infertility may be found in the woman, the man, or both. For a number of couples, the cause will remain unknown. The most common causes of infertility are ovulation disorders (20–30%), damage to fallopian tubes (10–20%), endometriosis (10–20%) and sperm quality (20–30%).
Complicated gynecological infections and surgical procedures are a fertility risk, as is advanced age in the woman. One of the main causes of why infertility is becoming an increasingly common problem is that people tend to postpone starting a family to a later and later age. This may cause unpleasant surprises, since the age of the woman is a major factor affecting both the likelihood of conception and the success of infertility treatments. Age is the single most important factor in all of the treatment options where the woman’s own ova are used.
You shouldn’t always wait for a full year
Infertility treatment should be considered once efforts to conceive have been continued for about one year without success. It is not always advisable to wait a full year, however. An earlier examination is called for if the woman is under 35 years of age, her menstrual cycle is irregular or if there is a reason to suspect damage to the fallopian tubes or weak sperm quality.