Infertility is not being able to conceive after a year of trying. This means having regular, unprotected sex. About one-third of cases are caused by male factors. An equal number are caused by female factors. In the remaining cases, the cause is unknown or is due to problems with both partners.
ART involves using human sperm and eggs or embryos in a lab to help with conception. The eggs and sperm can be from you and your partner or donated. ART methods include:
Artificial insemination—semen is collected and processed in a lab. It is then inserted directly into the woman's cervix or uterus.
In vitro fertilization (IVF)
—several mature eggs are removed from the woman's body and mixed with sperm in a lab. The egg and sperm mixture or a 2-3 day old embryo is then placed in the uterus.
Gamete or zygote intrafallopian transfer (GIFT or ZIFT)—an egg is removed from the woman's body and mixed with sperm in a lab. The egg and sperm mixture or a 2-3 day old embryo is then placed in the fallopian tube.
Blastocyst intrafallopian transfer—an egg is removed from the woman's body, injected with sperm, and allowed to develop. It is later implanted into the uterus.
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection—a single sperm is injected into the egg. The resulting embryo can be implanted into the uterus or frozen for later use.
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Infertility. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Published October 2017. Accessed December 11, 2017.