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Infertility Treatments Essay

1143 words - 5 pages

What does infertility mean? Women who are infertile cannot get pregnant after trying for one year, or 6 months if they are over the age of 35. Women are also said to be infertile if they can get pregnant but are unable to stay pregnant. Men who are infertile have a problem called varicosele, which is when the veins on the man’s testicles are too large and overheat the sperm (Blonna, Carter, and Levitan, 2010). Men who produce sperm that is unable to move properly, or if they are not the right shape, may have trouble reproducing (www.medicinet.com/infertility/article.htm). Like causes of female infertility, causes of male infertility can be multifaceted and deserve full investigation. In contrast to female infertility, all causes of male infertility affect only one target organ, the testes. A semen analysis is the primary test used to determine male fertility. Semen analysis results can be normal, mildly, moderately, or severely abnormal or may show no semen at all, a condition called azoospermia. Infertility is very common in the United States with about 10% or 6.1 million women unable to become pregnant or stay pregnant, according to the CDC (Blonna, Carter, and Levitan, 2010). Infertility can be treated in many different ways including, medicine, surrogacy, artificial insemination, or assisted reproductive technology (www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/infertility_fertility.cfm). In some cases, these treatments are combined and are successful for most couples.
An example of a medicine used is clomiphene citrate (Clomid), which is taken by mouth and causes ovulation by acting as the pituitary gland. This is used for women who have problems with ovulation or have polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). An example of artificial insemination is an IUI (intrauterine insemination), where the woman is injected with specially prepared sperm. This method of treatment is used when the male has a mild case of infertility, or the woman has problems with her cervical mucus (www.webmd.com/infertility-and-reproduction/guide/in-vitro-fertilization). Assisted reproductive technology works by removing the woman’s eggs, then mixing them with sperm to make embryos, which are then put back into the woman’s body (www.medicinet.com/infertility.article.htm). Success rates for this treatment vary depending on many factors including the following: age of the partners, reason for infertility, if the egg or the embryo is fresh or frozen. All of these treatments can be very expensive, stressful, and even time consuming. Young women, especially college students who are healthy, may be approached as possible donors. They are enticed when they see the amount of money offered, but do not realize the health risks that are involved.
Internationally, it is very beneficial for people from other countries to come to the United States for assisted reproduction because the clinics here offer procedures that are outlawed in their country. Chile, Romania, and Norway, for example, do not...

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