The inability to conceive and/or carry to term a pregnancy. On an
imagined spectrum ranging from completely sterile (complete absence of
physiological reproductive capacity) to unusually fertile (e.g. a woman
who conceives more often than an average woman, that being around 20 to
30 percent chance in each ovulatory cycle), most people will experience
varying degrees of fertility throughout a typical lifespan.
Levels of fertility -- that is, a body's ability to reproduce -- are
impacted by many different factors, related primarily to overall health,
physical conditions, and lifestyle choices. To simplify diagnosis, a
time-based point of view may provide guidance in deciding whether or not
to seek fertility treatment. The current perspective, as stated by the
American Society for Reproductive Medicine, defines infertility as
failure to achieve pregnancy after 12 months of more of regular,
unprotected intercourse. Fertility experts also recommend that women
older than 35 years should consider seeking treatment after only six
months of unprotected intercourse, because chances for successful
treatment diminish significantly with passing time.
Disclaimer: All information provided in this glossary is for educational purposes only.
It is not intended as a substitute for advice provided by a medical doctor or
qualified healthcare provider. You should not use this information
for self-diagnosis or for treating a health problem or disease.
If you have any questions whatsoever about your medical health or believe you have a medical
problem or disease, you should contact your medical doctor or healthcare provider.
You should never disregard medical advice or delay seeking medical advice or treatment because
of something you have read in this glossary. No guarantee is made about the accuracy,
completeness, or relevance of the information contained herein.