Researchers spent two years following adolescent girls diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and made some exciting discoveries that could impact the future of how this fertility-limiting disease is treated.
PCOS is characterized by an overproduction of the hormone androgen in the body. The result is an excess of mid-section fat, unwanted body hair in inappropriate places, and, most notably, failure to ovulate. Women with PCOS will still produce follicles on their ovaries, but their bodies will never release the matured egg into the fallopian tube for fertilization. When the follicle doesn’t release the egg, it turns into a cyst that goes on to produce additional androgen, making it increasingly less likely that the patient will be able to ovulate as time goes on. Continue reading
In order for fertilization to happen, the sperm has to complete a gargantuan swim that, if completed, is a miracle in itself. The route is so cumbersome that, of the 200-600 MILLION sperm released in a typical male ejaculate, only a select few will ever reach the waiting egg. Of those few, only one will enter the egg to go create an embryo.
Researchers at the University of Washington are studying how male sperm make this overwhelming feat possible in an effort to help other men with low sperm mobility achieve pregnancy with their partners in the future.
Clearly, the sperm is evolutionarily designed to improve the odds of reaching the egg. The long tail and streamlined body of each sperm serves one purpose: to swim quickly. The head of the sperm is filled with mitochondrial DNA in order to give it enough energy to transverse the female reproductive system. But what else can be done to get more sperm to the egg, in hopes of having the best genetics possible on hand to create the embryo?
Researchers think Continue reading
Surrogacy stories are storming the internet as Kim Kardashian and Kanye West prepare to welcome their third child by way of a surrogate. For most of us, the idea of allowing another person to carry our child is wildly foreign and something only available to celebrities. But the truth is surrogates are everyday women working with every day aspiring parents to create families of choice.
In this video, created by “The Cut”, Growing Generations’ Co-Owner Dr. Kim Bergman talks about what surrogacy is, and how it can be done ethically. Also in the video, two-time Growing Generations’ surrogate Mandy Storer talks about what it’s really like the moment the baby is born. Her answers may just surprise you! Continue reading
Medical science continues to evolve and discover ever more effective ways to increase the odds of becoming pregnant through InVitro Fertilization (IVF). The result is cutting-edge procedures like “mini-IVF,” which is a milder stimulation protocol. What does it mean for your family building journey? Take a look. Continue reading
As Growing Generations nears and crosses the 2,000 birth threshold, it’s interesting to take a look at just how many babies have been born in the United States as a result of IVF Treatments.
A report released in 2017 states that as of 2015, more than one million babies had been born through the use of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) in the United States. ART includes IVF or the use of donor genetics (an egg donor, sperm donor, or adopted embryo). These numbers are not specific to surrogacy; they include children born through any sort of medical preproduction assistance, but all children born of surrogacy are included in this number. Continue reading
Difficulty with conception leads many couples to fertility experts every year. Many learn that the issue lies within the female partner’s reproductive system through the presence of endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or other fertility-limiting conditions. But, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the quality of the male partner’s sperm can also play a large role in fertility problems. In fact, the CDC says that 18% of men who seek out fertility help will be diagnosed with Continue reading
Continued research into infertility and the natural ways to remedy it often capture the interest of couples struggling to conceive. Recently, a look at walnuts and their impact on sperm quality in animals has researchers excited about potential breakthrough technology for men struggling with poor sperm quality.
Because walnuts contain the exact same fatty acids found in sperm membranes, researcher set out to determine whether added consumption of these fatty acids could strengthen sperm membranes. The research, completed by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health & School of Nursing, found that Continue reading
Science is telling women to “chill out” if they want to get pregnant. Research published in early 2017 showed that women with the hormone Cortisol, more commonly known as the stress hormone, present in their hair were 1/3rd less likely to become pregnant than Continue reading
Researchers in Alabama are taking a closer look at sperm as they continue to strive towards more effective infertility treatments.
As it currently stands, most reproductive endocrinologists are only able to look at sperm for core factors- things like the amount of sperm present and the speed at which they swim. But this research would allow doctors to Continue reading
The future of IVF could mean that there is no longer a need for sperm or egg in order to create an embryo. This new technology is called In Vitro Gametogenesis, or IVG, and has already been successfully used in mice. In that experiment, a baby mouse was created from DNA taken from skin cells, as opposed to from sperm and egg.
The process works by taking skin cells and reassigning them to act as either sperm or eggs in a petri dish. Researchers hope that this technology, once available and tested on human subjects, could open the door to creating biological families for parents that could not pursue IVF methods. In this approach, it is realistic to think that a biological child could come from a parent or set of parents who are unable to donate healthy eggs, sperm, or both. Continue reading