According to researchers from Queen’s University Belfast, approximately one million couples undergo fertility treatments each year. Researchers also say that about a third of those couples have unexplained or idiopathic infertility, meaning that doctors have been unable to determine a cause for their fertility problems.
In cases in which the cause for infertility is known, doctors use the cause to come up with a treatment plan. If, for example, the fertility problem is due to sperm mobility problems, doctors may be able to successfully treat by fusing sperm and egg outside of the womb.
“The majority of couples experiencing problems with fertility are able to receive and explanation for their infertility,” Professor Sheena Lewis from the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences at Queens told Medical News Today. “These causes range from low sperm count, poor sperm motility in the man to blocked fallopian tubes or endometriosis in the women. Once the causes for infertility have been established, the appropriate course of assisted conception treatment can be taken.”
Unfortunately, couples with idiopathic infertility, doctors cannot distinguish which treatment plan would be most successful. Dr. Lewis has found new information that will hopefully give new hope to couples suffering from idiopathic infertility.