A spermbot, developed in Germany, is an artificially motorized sperm. It involves a micromotor wrapped around the tail of an immotile sperm, which helps propel it towards an egg for fertilization. To date, it’s only been tested in the lab, but researchers say human trials are a future goal.
“It’s a nice idea, but I’m not sure what problems it will solve clinically,” says Dr. Paul Turek. “The question is, ‘Why is that sperm not moving and what does that mean?’ It assumes that the sperm is perfectly healthy and that it just needs help moving to and attaching to the egg.” In those instances there is already a way to obtain and use the sperm -- with ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection). “In terms of labor and involvement in the fertilization process it’s just as complex as ICSI and its true indications are going to be few and far between.”
“No treatment we can do after conception is as powerful as something we may do ahead of pregnancy,” says Dr. Ruth Lathi. “I think that’s one thing we are trying to change is preparation for pregnancy, or what some people call the ‘pre-trimester.’ The three months before you conceive is probably the most important determinant of outcome of pregnancy, or at least that’s our philosophy.”
Contribute more to IRA? Check. Look for less expensive car insurance? Check. Get more organized? Check. Freeze my eggs? Consider it.
In today's society, at least one in five women waits to begin their families until after age 35. In theory, this is a smart choice — women are typically mature at age 35; they are likely to be established in their careers; and they have had time to find the right partner and strengthen their partnership.
The problem is, if you are thinking of waiting until after 35, your eggs will be more mature, too. And older eggs simply don't make it easy to become a parent. Infertility rates are higher, as are the rates of miscarriage and recurrent miscarriage. So if you are putting off childbirth for career reasons, or you haven't found the right partner, or you simply don't feel ready for parenting, egg freezing (oocyte cryopreservation) may be one investment you should explore.
“If we try and uphold the highest ethical standards, we never go wrong. That’s been a guiding light for our practice.”
Dr. Carolyn Givens is a Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologist who treats fertility patients at Pacific Fertility Center in San Francisco, CA. She co-directs the Bay Area Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis Program and directs Pacific Fertility Center’s PGD/PGS Program. FertilityAuthority is pleased to honor Dr. Givens as Fertility Doctor of the Month.
Just like with any diagnosis, women who have been diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) may experience the disease differently from one another. That being said, there are definitely symptoms and associated issues that tend to be very, very common among the diagnosed. Skin problems. A little (or a lot) of extra weight that wasn't really earned (which is wholly unfair). Facial hair. Completely unreliable or the total absence of ovulation. Basically a slew of things that may make you feel like you're personally bringing sexy back.
A recent study identified that men who are azoospermic - having no sperm in their ejaculate - have a greater risk of developing cancer. Dr. Michael Eisenberg, Director of Male Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at Stanford University, in Palo Alto, CA, is lead author of the study.
For couples who end up needing In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) in order to conceive, learning about the process can be overwhelming. There are preparations, medications, costs, injections, tests to learn about - a whole new world of procedural aspects and terminology you probably wouldn't have otherwise known about. For many couples, one component of their IVF plan-of-attack they may need to familiarize themselves with is ICSI.
ICSI (short for intracytoplasmic sperm injection) is a fertilization technique that was developed more than twenty years ago, to best bypass certain issues with sperm and/or fertilization during an IVF cycle.
BPA (Bisphenol A) is a chemical used to make some hard plastics and resins like the ones that coat food and drink cans. BPA has been linked to a range of health issues including breast cancer and liver abnormalities, and problems with brain and hormone development in fetuses and children. Twenty-seven bills have been introduced at the state level in 2013 that provide legislation regarding the use of BPA. In April, the California Environmental Protection Agency announced that the state will identify BPA as a reproductive toxicant.
Dr. Evan Rosenbluth, a reproductive endocrinologist with Reproductive Science Center of the Bay Area has performed award-winning research studying non-invasive methods for determining embryo implantation potential. Biopsies - including preimplantation genetic screening or PGS - are invasive and can add can $5,000 to $6,000 to an IVF cycle, he says. Currently that is the best option for determining which embryos are chromosomally normal. His goal is to develop biopsy-free methods for selecting healthy embryos.