Bands of scar tissue caused by surgical procedures, endometriosis, or infections. Adhesions connect two organs together, affecting normal reproductive function.
When sperm cells clump or stick together.
Absence of menstrual cycles (periods).
A professional society of more than 10,000 members who work in the field of reproductive healthcare. It provides educational information and sets standards of care for reproductive medicine.
A hormone, such as testosterone, that stimulates the male sex drive.
A specialty focusing on male infertility in assisted reproductive technology (ART).
A GnRH (gonadotropin releasing hormone) antagonist (drug used to block the action of GnRH) that can prevent a premature LH surge, and is sometimes prescribed in ovulation induction therapies. GnRH antagonists need to be injected during the time period when a LH surge is likely to occur.
The application of light suction to the ovarian follicle to remove the eggs in IVF, or to tubules in the testis to remove sperm in TESA.
A sophisticated micromanipulation technique for perforating the shell surrounding the egg (the zona pellucida) so that the embryo can "break out" and implant in the uterus. As women get older, the zona pellucida may become harder or tougher, making it difficult for the embryos to hatch. As a result, implantation and pregnancy may not occur. Using micromanipulation, a portion of the zona pellucida (outer shell) is thinned by applying a weak acid solution to a very small area.
Treatments and procedures involving the handling of human eggs and sperm for the purpose of establishing a pregnancy. Types of ART include in vitro fertilization (IVF), oocyte donation, preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), assisted hatching, fragment removal, embryo cryopreservation, frozen embryo transfer, and oocyte donation.
Aygestin is a form of progestin, a synthetic substance that chemically resembles progesterone, that may be prescribed in ovulation induction therapies to inhibit ovulation and quiet the ovaries in advance of egg stimulation using injectable hormones. This "down time" helps the ovaries respond better to treatment. In much the same way that oral contraceptives prevent pregnancy by inhibiting normal ovulation, Aygestin is used in IVF and related procedures to turn off the body's natural ovulatory cycle. Side effects of Aygestin may include: abdominal pain or cramps; diarrhea; fatigue; unusual tiredness; weakness; hot flashes; decreased sex drive; nausea; trouble sleeping; depression, irritability, or other mood changes; swelling in the face, ankles, or feet; weight gain.
The absence of sperm in the ejaculate.
A hormone, secreted by the anterior pituitary gland, which promotes the development of ova in the female and testicular function in the male. In women, FSH stimulates the ovary to ripen a follicle during the menstrual cycle. High FSH values in a woman before menopause may mean that her ovaries are not working or that she may have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). In men, FSH helps control the production of sperm. The amount of FSH in men normally remains constant.
Injectable Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH) (brand names: Follistim, Gonal-F) is a genetically engineered (recombinant) form of FSH which is used to stimulate the recruitment and development of multiple eggs in women during an ovulation induction cycle. FSH products may be used alone or in combination with human menopausal gonadotropins (hMG). Due to the variability in response from patient to patient, each patient's cycle must be individualized. This requires ultrasound exams and blood estrogen levels to assess ovarian response. FSH is available only in an injectable form. You will need to learn injection techniques. FSH is administered by subcutaneous or intramuscular injection. This injection should be given at the same time each evening. Side effects may include: ovarian enlargement and discomfort, ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, multiple gestation, abdominal pain, and headache. Discomfort and bruising may occur at the injection site. Monitoring with ultrasounds and estradiol minimizes the risk of complications.
The brand name for Leuprolide acetate, a GnRH analog. Lupron suppresses the brain's secretion of LH and FSH. It is used in preparation for cycles of treatment with ovulation induction drugs (hMG and/or FSH) for IVF. Lupron causes the ovaries to shut down and rest (suppression). Given a chance to rest, the ovaries respond better and a more controlled cycle can be achieved. Lupron enables the ovaries to respond with the recruitment of multiple follicles since in most cases it can override the selection of a single dominant follicle. It also prevents premature ovulation (release of eggs) by preventing LH release.
To confirm the effectiveness of the Lupron treatment, an ultrasound will be performed before the ovarian stimulation is begun and a blood estrogen level will be required. Lupron is available in an injectable form. Therefore, you and your partner will be taught subcutaneous injection. The multi-dose vial should be kept cool (< 75°F), so refrigeration is recommended. This drug should be given at the same time every day (one-hour leeway). If you are starting Lupron after a spontaneous menstrual cycle (no oral contraceptive pills) you should use barrier contraception for the preparatory cycle.
Side effects may include: hot flushes, vaginal dryness, and skin rash. Side effects of long-term treatment (greater than six weeks) include hot flushes, vaginal dryness, and bone loss. These side effects are extremely rare after short-term use associated with standard IVF. No long-term side effects after IVF treatment have been known to occur.