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Causes for infertility:  understanding where things can go wrong

It is easier to understand what causes a couple to have difficulty in conceiving if you understand what is supposed to happen normally. To learn about normal fertility, click here.

The causes for infertility can be broken down into several categories.

  • Coital problems. Some couples are unable to have intercourse or have it at the wrong time of the month.
  • Sperm problems. Some men have low sperm counts or a low percentage of swimming or normally shaped sperm.
  • Ovulation issues. Some women do not release eggs, release them infrequently, or don't produce enough hormones to hold on to the pregnancy.
  • Tubal issues. Some women have blocked or damaged fallopian tubes. Others have a condition called endometriosis that has been associated with infertility.
  • Poor ovarian reserve. Some women have lower numbers of eggs and/or poor quality eggs, making a genetically normal conception less likely.