This is a startling statistic, but it’s important to understand why it’s happening and what we can do about it. Starting by understanding your hormone levels across the spectrum as there are many different hormones that can affect fertility in men and women.
For women some of the most important hormones for fertility include:
- Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH): helps to stimulate the growth of follicles in the ovaries. Follicles are small sacs that contain eggs.
- Luteinizing hormone (LH): helps to trigger the release of an egg from the ovary.
- Oestrogen: helps to prepare the uterus for pregnancy.
- Progesterone: helps to maintain a pregnancy.
An example of their impact is that, if a woman has low levels of FSH, she may not ovulate regularly. Or if a woman has high levels of LH, she may release more than one egg at a time, which can increase the risk of twins or triplets.
With one blood test we can test for 9 different critical hormones. This immediate full view allows us to address any imbalances with same day consultations and next day medication delivery to your home.
For men, there are two main hormones that are important for fertility:
- Testosterone is responsible for the development of male sexual characteristics, such as muscle mass, facial hair, and a deep voice.
- FSH helps to stimulate the production of sperm in the testicles
The primary reason for male infertility lies with the sperm itself with it being estimated that around 40% of male infertility cases are caused by medical conditions relating to the sperm. Therefore testing sperm is an essential component of male fertility testing.
Comprehensive semen analysis includes reviewing of:
- Sperm count: This is the number of sperm in a sample of semen.
- Sperm concentration: This is the number of sperm per millilitre of semen.
- Sperm motility: This is the percentage of sperm that are moving.
- Sperm morphology: This is the shape of the sperm.
- Sperm vitality: This is the percentage of sperm that are alive.
- White blood cells: This is the number of white blood cells in a sample of semen.
- Antisperm antibodies: These are antibodies that attack sperm.
In the UK the NHS offers fertility assessment but the waiting times can vary depending on where you live. In some areas, you may have to wait several months for an appointment.