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Johns Hopkins Health - 3 Key Infertility Facts

Spring 2016
Issue No. 32

3 Key Infertility Facts

Date: April 15, 2016

3 Key Infertility Facts


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Fertility struggles aren’t often talked about openly. But for the 12 percent of married women who are currently having trouble getting pregnant or staying pregnant, infertility is never out of mind.

With National Infertility Awareness Week coming up beginning April 24, we asked two Johns Hopkins experts in fertility and gynecology, Mindy Christianson, M.D., and Kristin Patzkowsky, M.D., to share the top three things they want women to be aware of regarding reproductive health.

1. AGE DOES MATTER

After age 35 it does become increasingly difficult to conceive. In the 10 to 15 years before menopause officially occurs, both egg count and egg quality decrease, says Christianson. Today, more women in their 30s who aren’t ready to have a family are increasingly choosing egg freezing.

2. MEDICAL CONDITIONS MIGHT BE AT PLAY

Endometriosis and uterine fibroids are two common medical conditions associated with infertility. Endometriosis happens when the cells women normally shed during menstruation end up outside of the uterus. Uterine fibroids, found in up to 80 percent of women in their 40s, often affect fertility when they appear inside the uterus. For a woman trying to conceive, says Patzkowsky, surgery may be recommended for either condition.

3. THERE’S NO SHAME IN INFERTILITY

In a recent survey, 61 percent of respondents hid their infertility from family and friends. That’s a shame, say our experts, because speaking out to trusted loved ones means getting support as you and your doctor unravel the root cause of your infertility.