My fertility struggle is taking the pleasure out of my sex life. What can I do?

Posted & filed under Sex, Sperm, The Basics, The Journey.

Despite some early reports, fertility doesn’t improve if the female partner orgasms. Sex doesn’t have to be emotionally or physically satisfying in order to conceive. Sexuality and fertility don’t have to fit together at all. But that doesn’t mean sexuality doesn’t matter. Sexuality and fertility and, yes, love, are all mixed together for all of… Read more »

3 situations where you’ll want to consider IVF

Posted & filed under Aging, Eggs, IVF, Sperm, Tests, The Basics.

Nobody wants to do IVF. Whenever a couple or individual arrives at a fertility clinic, the strong goal is to work as naturally as possible to maximize the chances for pregnancy. My suspicion is that this comes down to two reasons. Financial, yes, but importantly, emotional: For all of us, the plan was to achieve… Read more »

What is DNA Fragmentation?

Posted & filed under IVF, Sperm, Tests, The Basics, The Journey.

The DNA Fragmentation is one of several elements of semen quality used to assess the male fertility potential. Sperm’s ability to fertilize an egg is dependant on healthy DNA. But some sperm are fragmented. Healthy DNA is arranged in a double-helix spiral bound by cross-bonds resembling a ladder. DNA damage means the bridges become unstable… Read more »

What are the guidelines for known sperm donation?

Posted & filed under Aging, IVF, Sperm.

Health Canada does not support known-donor, fresh-sperm insemination. The rationale is to protect the health of women involved. Guidelines are clear that couples must be having sexual intercourse before a fertility clinic can use a fresh sample in an insemination. We can help you monitor your cycle – we can even make sure you have… Read more »

We’re considering using an anonymous sperm donor. How does it work in Canada?

Posted & filed under Aging, IVF, Sex, Sperm, The Basics.

Health Canada has guidelines in place to allow women to have safe access to donor sperm. However, there are some logistical challenges limiting choice. There is only one Canadian sperm bank: ReproMed, based in Toronto. To allow for a greater variety of sperm available to Canadians, Health Canada has allowed for the importation of non-altruistically-donated… Read more »

Smoking, illicit drugs, alcohol and fertility

Posted & filed under Eggs, Sex, Sperm.

Such a difficult topic, of course, because the very clear-cut, medically/legally safe answer is entirely straightforward: never drink, smoke or use illicit drugs. As physicians, it’s our duty to inform all patients that this is accepted dogma and that there is no minimal dose that is known to be safe and, therefore, no one should… Read more »

What’s more effective: IUI or FSP?

Posted & filed under Sperm, The Journey.

“My husband and I have unexplained secondary infertility and are about to start our first IUI. I was reading about the success rates of FSP (fallopian sperm perfusion) for unexplained infertility and how FSP may be more effective than IUI. It is suggested that couples with unexplained infertility may benefit from FSP over IUI, resulting in higher… Read more »

How do I improve my chances for embryo implantation?

Posted & filed under Eggs, IVF, Sperm, Tests, The Basics.

Embryo implantation is complicated, as you can imagine! But here’s a breakdown of some of the key elements that can help you maximize your chances: 1. Oocyte (egg) quality Implantation is more likely to happen when a healthy embryo is present, and the best predictor for a healthy embryo is a healthy egg. Egg quality… Read more »

Should I have one or two intrauterine inseminations?

Posted & filed under Eggs, Sperm.

If your underlying concern is around serious male factor subfertility, or blocked/compromised tubes (as can happen with endometriosis), or serious concerns around egg quality, then IVF is by far the better choice for achieving pregnancy. Not everybody needs IVF. Many patients may benefit from intrauterine inseminations. IUI, where sperm is washed and placed high within… Read more »

How long does it take to improve my sperm quality?

Posted & filed under Sperm, The Basics, The Journey.

It takes about 72 days for sperm to mature from stem cells to fully-functioning sperm, so any changes you make need to be consistent for about three months. You can talk to your doctor to find out whether HCG, clomiphene, letrozole, and rFSH preparations will be helpful for you. Vitamin therapy is one of the… Read more »

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