The hormone DHEA naturally occurs in the body, but levels decrease as we age. DHEA supplements can be bought over the counter. They have helped slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's, and arthritis. Now doctors at the Texas Fertility Center are studying the impact of DHEA on women trying to get pregnant. Dr. Natalie Burger, a physician at Texas Fertility Center, has implemented the DHEA supplement among dozens of patients pursuing IVF on a trial basis.
A growing number of U.S. women appear to be opting for intrauterine devices (IUDs) as their birth control method, with the number more than doubling in just two years in one study. Researchers, whose findings were published in the journal Fertility & Sterility, said this is good news, since IUDs and contraceptive implants are the most effective forms of reversible birth control. When IUDs first came out, there were concerns - later disproved - that they might raise the risk of pelvic infection and jeopardize women's future fertility.
Given the state of the economy, lower cost alternatives to in vitro fertilization appear to be gaining favor, spurring a look back into history at the potential for superovulation and intrauterine insemination to achieve pregnancy in infertile couples.
A new study finds that women spent the maximum time and money on their appearance, grooming and shopping during their most fertile time (roughly day eight to 15 of a 28-day cycle). Food consumption was found to be lowest during the fertility days and the appetites were found to be the maximum in the luteal or infertile phase of their menstrual cycle (roughly day 16 to 28 of a 28-day cycle). Also, researchers noted that women craved for high calorie food during their non fertile time.
Sperm with damaged DNA are more likely to cause spontaneous pregnancy loss, report researchers. However, it should be possible to reduce such losses during assisted conception if sperm are screened for DNA damage before injection, they say. In a meta-analysis of data from 16 studies, a significant relationship was found between having a high frequency of sperm with elevated DNA damage and miscarriage among 2,969 couples who conceived either spontaneously or via assisted conception.
The future of pregnant women in the United States will significantly change Aug. 1. That is when the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, will require insurance providers and Medicaid to cover clinical preventative services for women, including prenatal care, all without charging a co-pay, co-insurance or a deductible.As the U.S. maternal mortality rate continues to increase, this new health care law could offer improvements in preventative care for women. Yet, definitive answers to why more American mothers are dying remain scarce.
Forget the polls. The gauge of success in this year's presidential election could come down to another indicator -- how many Americans are making babies. The fertility rate has long been linked by economists to the health of the economy. It's unclear what that rate will be come election day -- but right now, projections show confidence is down in an historic way. If the trend holds, it's another sign that President Obama will have to counter a pessimistic mood to win a second term.
Dr. Anthony Caruso, A Chicago reproductive endocrinologist and doctor at Alexian Brothers Medical Center in Elk Grove Village, has proposed opening the St. Anne Center for Reproductive Health. The center would be one of a handful of clinics in the United States that helps couples struggling to have children within the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services. It would not offer in vitro fertilization (IVF), artificial insemination or certain medicines often prescribed as a course of treatment.
Twenty-somethings who postponed having babies because of the poor economy are still hesitant to jump in to parenthood — an unexpected consequence that has dropped the USA's birthrate to its lowest point in 25 years. The fertility rate is not expected to rebound for at least two years and could affect birthrates for years to come, according to Demographic Intelligence, a Charlottesville, Va., company that produces quarterly birth forecasts for consumer products and pharmaceutical giants such as Pfizer and Procter & Gamble.
Carolyn Savage knows more than most about the moral and ethical quandaries of in-vitro fertilization. An IVF clinic mistake left her impregnated with another couple's child; she carried that child to term and gave him up to his biological parents, knowing that would have to be her last pregnancy for medical reasons. Later, she became the mother of twins through a surrogate. The mom of five reflects on how much has changed, and how much hasn't, since the first "test tube baby" was born 34 years ago today.