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Male Fertility and ICSI

July 18, 2018 9:40 pm

Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) is a procedure whereby a single sperm cell is injected into an egg cell. In natural conditions, the sperm would use chemicals located in the head to bore through the egg’s “shell”. It is technically an IVF procedure as it is performed ‘in vitro’ (literally means ‘in glass’, contextually it means ‘within a test tube’). As you may have gathered, ICSI should mostly be used in cases where it is the male who is subfertile. The procedure of injecting a sperm into an egg bypasses the natural process. This procedure was perfected quite recently, with the first human pregnancy generated by ICSI being in 1991. It brought with it a revolution in the... View Article

Why Should I Consider Freezing My Eggs?

July 13, 2018 10:09 am

As you age, the likelihood that you will naturally conceiving a child reduces because the number and quality of your eggs drops. Egg freezing, therefore, is a fantastic option if you wish to preserve your fertility and, in some ways, stop the biological clock. There are various reasons why you might consider having your eggs frozen.  Here are a few: You might not feel ready to start a family but would like to in the future. Perhaps you would prefer to focus on other aspects of your life at present, such as your career or education, or you haven’t found ‘Mr Right’. You might be undergoing treatment for an illness such as cancer, which will likely affect your fertility. You... View Article

Can Traumatic Memories Be Passed on in Human Sperm?

July 3, 2018 12:20 pm

A recent study involving men who experienced early life trauma has displayed surprising results. It involved 28 Caucasian men, all of whom had experienced some form of abuse or neglect as a child. The results suggest that as the amount of early trauma increased amongst participants, so did the reduction in microRNAs. This is an example of the type of information found on the internet that should not be taken at face value. Psychologists have known for a long time that traumatic experiences can lead to behavioural problems in offspring, but there has been little understanding as to why. With only 28 participants, the results of this research are inconclusive and could simply be coincidental. For example, the participants could... View Article

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How Does Age Affect Male Fertility?

June 25, 2018 11:19 am

With regards to fertility, women have always had a clear cut-off point, commonly known as the menopause. Men, on the other hand, have never been given a rough age in which they will no longer be able to conceive a child. As a result, research surrounding the topic is fairly sparse. At a recent event dedicated exclusively to male fertility, the topic of age was addressed. The first speaker at the event was Professor Allan Pacey from the University of Sheffield. He pointed out the lack of data surrounding the matter and discussed a study from the year 2000, which focussed on 8500 couples and suggested that men under 25 were significantly more fertile than men over 40. It has... View Article

Possible Treatment for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

June 13, 2018 6:52 pm

When it comes to female infertility, the most common culprit is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. This condition affects 1 in 5 women, of whom 75% experience infertility. PCOS affects fertility by increasing the levels of testosterone, creating ovarian cysts, causing irregularities in the menstrual cycle and misregulation of sugar. This is truly a catastrophic disease, however this may not be the case for so long.   Sufferers of PCOS usually have higher counts of a hormone known as ‘Anti Mullerian Hormone’ (AMH). It must be stated now that this is sort of a chicken – egg scenario, as the scientific community are still investigating which causes the other. Does high AMH levels cause PCOS or vice versa.   For the unacquainted... View Article

Does My Uterine Tract Tilt Affect My Fertility?

May 22, 2018 4:25 pm

The uterus, also called the womb, is where a baby grows during pregnancy. It is shaped like a pear and joined to the walls of the pelvis by flexible ligaments that enable it to tilt forward and backward. If your uterus is anteverted, it means it is tilted towards the front of the abdomen. Your uterus can also tilt backwards, which is referred to as a retroverted uterus. The vast majority of women don’t actually know what direction their uterus tilts. However, a pelvic exam or ultrasound will help you find out. If you have an anteverted uterus and are struggling to conceive a child, it is likely due to another fertility issue, since the shape or tilt of your... View Article

Could Exposure to Caffeine in the Womb Cause Childhood Weight Gain?

May 7, 2018 3:47 pm

A recent observational study published by BMJ Open suggests that mums-to-be should cut out caffeine while pregnant, as the findings show that it is linked to excess weight gain during the child’s early years. It passes rapidly through tissues, including the placenta, and takes the body longer to dispose of during pregnancy. The study included almost 51,000 mother and infant pairs, all of whom were previously involved in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study between 2002 and 2008. Using a specifically adapted Food Frequency Questionnaire, the pregnant women were asked to quantify their food and drink intake, from around 255 items, including caffeine. Highly caffeinated items included things like coffee, black tea, energy drinks and various sugary snacks. After... View Article

Antihistamines Have Been linked to Fertility Problems in Men

April 23, 2018 2:41 pm

Common allergy medications have been linked to fertility issues in men. Antihistamines are just another over the counter medication that can have a negative effect on fertility over time. An Argentinian review of commonly taken drugs has identified antihistamines are one of the drugs that impairs normal testicular function. Researchers have found that these drugs can lead to altered sperm morphology, decreased sperm motility, and lower sperm count. However, these studies are on animals and human studies are still limited. A rise in allergies throughout the western world has turned antihistamines into one of the world’s most popular drugs. While histamines are produced in response to allergens, they are also involved in other physical processes such as sleep regulation, sexual... View Article

Easy Ways to Improve Your Health and Fertility

April 17, 2018 2:40 pm

Maintaining a healthy diet, stable weight, and consistent exercise regime is incredibly important for your fertility and overall health. However, with long commutes, limited time, and increasing work hours it can be difficult to prioritise these things and stick to a regime. Maintaining a healthy diet, stable weight, and consistent exercise regime is incredibly important for your fertility and overall health. However, with long commutes, limited time, and increasing work hours it can be difficult to prioritise these things and stick to a regime. Here are some simple and relatively easy ways to stay healthy without spending hours in the gym or preparing balanced weekly menus. Look at Subscription Boxes Food subscription boxes are one of the latest trends to... View Article

Study Shows Genes Affect Academic Performance More Than Schooling

April 10, 2018 2:27 pm

Scientific analysis of over 5,000 students has shown that good exam results are down to genetics rather than attending selective schools. Researchers compared genetic differences between British students attending selective grammar and private schools, and non-selective comprehensive schools in the UK. After considering other factors, such as family’s socioeconomic status, and analysing each pupil’s academic ability and achievement at 11 and 16, the school type explained less than 1% of grade differences. This is the first study to look at subtle genetic differences between students attending selective and comprehensive schools, but it has raised some controversy because of the genetic ‘scoring system’ and methods used. Ideally, the study should be repeated within another education system to reinforce the results. Professor... View Article