Pub. date: 2004 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952576 | Print ISBN: 9780761923602 | Online ISBN: 9781412952576| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Infertility and Assisted Reproduction: Psychosocial Aspects
Kerry Sherman & Miranda Montrone & Suzanne M. Miller
A medical diagnosis of infertility is made when a pregnancy does not occur after one year of unprotected sexual intercourse. It is estimated that one in every six couples of childbearing age experience medically diagnosable infertility problems. For many years there was a belief in a diagnosis of psychogenic infertility, where infertility was seen to have psychological causes. However, extensive psychological research over many years has found no evidence to support this diagnosis. Furthermore, advancements in scientific analysis of the biological aspects of reproduction, namely eggs, sperm, and the male and female reproductive systems, have enabled the identification of medical causes of infertility in cases that were previously determined to be “idiopathic infertility,” or infertility of unknown cause. In general, male factor problems relating to sperm numbers, morphology (shape), or motility account for 40% of infertility diagnoses; female factor problems such as ovulation disorders, fallopian tube blockages, endometriosis, or Behavioral ...