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Happy NIAW! Here's Some Facts ...

National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) is here! During this week, RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association joins with millions of women and men fighting the disease of infertility, as well as health care professionals, psychologists and other though leaders to promote awareness about infertility.

The theme of this year's NIAW is: "Don't Ignore Infertility." Talk about it. Blog about it. Write letters to your elected representatives about it. For easy reference, here's a few facts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and RESOLVE:

  • The definition of infertility is not being able to get pregnant after one year of unprotected intercourse if the woman is under 35; and not being able to get pregnant after six months of unprotected intercourse if the woman is 35 or over.
  • About 10 to 12 percent of women in the United States have difficulty getting pregnant or staying pregnant.
  • About one-third of infertility cases are caused by women’s problems, and another one third of fertility problems are caused by men's problems. The other cases are caused by a mixture of male and female problems or by unknown problems.
  • Infertility can be treated with fertility drugs, surgery, intrauterine insemination or assisted reproductive technology such as in vitro fertilization (IVF).
  • IVF success depends on many factors, particularly age. According to the CDC's preliminary IVF success rates for 2010, the average percentage of IVF cycles that led to a live birth were: 42 percent in women younger than 35; 32 percent in women ages 35 to 37; 22 percent in women ages 38 to 40; 12 percent in women ages 41 to 42; and 5 percent in women ages 43 to 44.
  • The majority of infertility cases are treated with fertility drugs or surgery. Fewer than 3 percent need advanced reproductive technologies such as IVF.
  • Only 15 states in the United States have passed laws requiring that insurance policies cover some level of fertility treatment.

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