5 myths about infertility

Tuesday, October 30, 2018
5 myths about infertility

Females are the culprits: Most people believe that women are responsible when it comes to infertility. The reality is that in 40% of the cases the female partner is responsible, 40% of the cases males are responsible and remaining 20% both are responsible. It can be said that in 50% cases, the male partner is responsible in some or the other way for infertility. They hesitate and do not come forward for investigations, in many cases they don't accompany their wife for the treatment. It gives more stress and trouble to the wife. 

Body weight has got nothing to do with infertility: It is often thought that weight doesn’t carry any significance when it comes to infertility. There is a relationship between body weight and infertility. Low body weight, as well as high body weight both, can affect fertility adversely. Being underweight that is having BMI less than 18.5 may adversely affect the secretion of estrogen. Woman can have irregular periods which affects the ovulation. Having a high BMI causes the extra fat cells to secrete excess estrogen. The excess estrogen interferes with the female reproductive system. If the BMI (Body Mass Index) is more than 32, doctors don't recommend fertility treatment. BMI ideally should be brought down to 29 before infertility treatment.

IVF babies are not parent’s own biological babies: It is usually said that if a baby is born by using the IVF technology, then that baby is not the parent’s own biological baby which is a big misconception. IVF babies are very much parent’s own biological babies. There is no genetic difference in a baby born through IVF and a baby born naturally. The difference is that the fertilization takes place outside (in a lab) and then the embryo is transferred in the womb of the gestational mother. In fact, even in cases of gestational surrogacy, genetic material of the baby belongs to biological parents only. 

IVF babies are malformed/abnormal and chances of abortion are very high: This is absolutely wrong! It is a well-established fact that IVF babies are as normal as the other babies. If at all there is an increased number of malformed babies born through IVF, it is due to the increased age factor of the patients or various other disorders affecting infertility such as endometriosis, diabetes etc. 

All the cases of infertility can be treated successfully using IVF: IVF has its limitations. Though on around 95% patients some or the other technique works, there are 5% patients who could not have biological children. These parents can adopt a child. 

(The writer is founder & director, Mira Hospital & IVF center. Views expressed are personal)

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