When do I need to go to a center of assisted fertilization?
As a general figure if a couple cannot conceive after one year of trying they should seek help.The causes of infertility are in 30% of cases of female origin and in 30% of male origin. In 20% of couples the causes are mixed i.e. due to both partners, while in the remaining 20% the causes of sterility are not easily identified and here we talk of idiopathic or unexplained infertility.
What is meant by immunological infertility?
Immunological fertility refers to the presence of anti-sperm antibodies in the male partner, the female partner, or both. In women, these antibodies can be present in the cervix and the cervical mucus where they attack the sperm, preventing them from reaching the egg cell. In the male they can be present in the seminal fluid where they can reduce sperm motility. To assess the presence of antispermatic antibodies laboratory tests, such as the MARtest and the IBTtest, may be carried out.
Immunological infertility may not always be resolved by medical therapy; frequently affected couples need assisted fertilization, and in particular ICSI.
What are the chances of getting pregnant with assisted fertilization techniques?
The chances of getting pregnant with IVF depends on several factors, with the age of the female partner being the most important. In patients under 30 years of age, there is a pregnancy every two patients (50%). With increasing age, the percentage of success decreases to as much as 1 pregnancy every 4-5 (20%) patients in women over the age of 40.
It is important to consider that in addition to female age, other infertility factors greatly affect success rates, such as immunological infertility, endometriosis or PCOS can greatly reduce the chances of success even if the patient is very young.
What are the main causes of infertility?
Most young couples will obtain a pregnancy during the first year of unprotected intercourse. If this does not occur in the first 12-18 months it is unlikely that it will happen spontaneously. It is at this point advisable to contact a centre specialized in assisted reproductive techniques. In the case of couples where the female partner is over 35 years, it is advisable to visit a specialized center no later than 6 months of attempts.
What is the pre-implantation genetic diagnosis or PGD?
Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis is the genetic analysis of embryos produced through assisted fertilization techniques and is particularly useful for couples with hereditary transmissible diseases. This genetic diagnosis allows the detection of many genetic pathologies (eg ß-thalassemia, sickle cell anemia, dystrophy) as well as chromosomal alterations in the embryo.