Most Common Causes of Infertility

Infertility affects up to 15% of couples. You may receive an infertility diagnosis if you can’t get pregnant after one year of unprotected intercourse if you’re under 35, or after six months if you’re over 35, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Infertility has many possible causes. Here at Albany Obstetrics & Gynecology, we work with you and your partner to investigate all of the possible reasons you may be having trouble conceiving. Once we determine a potential cause, we help guide you toward treatment options that may make pregnancy possible.

Our care providers would like to share the following information with you about the most common causes of infertility.

About infertility

If you think infertility is only due to health problems in women, you’re wrong. According to RESOLVE, the National Infertility Association, approximately 30% of infertility is due to male factors, and 30% is due to female factors. The rest is caused by problems in both partners or has no apparent cause, which is known as unexplained infertility.

Female factors

Some of the more common causes of infertility in women include:

Structural problems

A woman may have trouble getting pregnant if she has structural problems with her ovaries, fallopian tubes, uterus, or other reproductive organs.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

Women with PCOS may not ovulate regularly because of hormone disorders. However, treatment can help many women with PCOS get pregnant.


Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue from inside a woman’s uterus grows in places where it shouldn’t, such as her ovaries or fallopian tubes. Endometrial scarring can interfere with conception or a healthy pregnancy.

Early menopause

Also known as premature ovarian insufficiency, early menopause can occur before age 40.

Male factors

Some of the more common causes of infertility in men include:

Structural abnormalities

These are problems with the structure of the male reproductive system. For example, a man may have blockages that prevent sperm from getting where it needs to go.

Low sperm count

If a man doesn’t produce enough sperm, he and his partner may not be able to conceive a baby. A common cause of low sperm counts are varicoceles, which are enlarged veins in the testicles that can often be surgically repaired.

Ejaculation problems

The inability to ejaculate properly can make it difficult for sperm to travel in a normal way and reach the egg.

Female and male factors

A couple may have trouble conceiving if either or both of them:

Get help for your infertility

The good news is that many types of male and female infertility can be successfully treated.

Our specialists at Albany Obstetrics & Gynecology in Albany, New York, offer a full range of diagnostic and treatment services for couples with infertility. To schedule an appointment with one of our providers, call our office at 518-516-6726 or use our contact form to reach us.

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