Advanced Care for Female Infertility in Pennsylvania

Discover your path to parenthood with Main Line Fertility, the leading fertility clinic for comprehensive female infertility care in the Greater Philadelphia region. Our team of highly-skilled fertility experts combines the most cutting-edge techniques and treatments with a warm and supportive approach to female fertility.

Understanding Female Infertility

Female infertility is defined as the inability to conceive a child or carry a pregnancy to full term, despite having regular, unprotected sexual intercourse. In general, if you are a woman under the age of 35 who has been trying to conceive for a year, it’s recommended that you see a fertility specialist; however, if you’re over the age of 35, it’s recommended that you see a fertility specialist after six months of trying to conceive. Although female infertility is most closely associated with age, it is very common and can happen to anyone regardless of age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity.

Causes of Female Infertility

Infertility in women can result from various factors, such as age, hormonal imbalances, structural abnormalities in the reproductive system, ovulation disorders, and other medical conditions.

Age and Female Fertility

One of the most common causes of infertility in women is age. Women are born with a set number of eggs, which drops dramatically around their mid-to-late-30s. Furthermore, the eggs that remain are more likely to have quality issues, making it difficult for fertilization or implantation to successfully occur.

Hormonal Imbalances

Hormones are chemical messengers that control nearly every bodily function, including reproduction and fertility. Hormonal imbalances in women, such as those caused by polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), can cause a wide range of fertility issues, including ovulation dysfunction, ovarian cysts, endometrial abnormalities, and more.

Structural Abnormalities

Female infertility is sometimes caused by structural abnormalities of one or more of the reproductive organs, including the uterus, fallopian tubes, or cervix:

  • Uterine Abnormalities: The uterus, also referred to as the womb, is the organ responsible for the implantation and gestation of the embryo. One type of uterine abnormality that can interfere with implantation is a uterine septum, which is when a wall-like structure forms a divide in the uterus. The uterus also sometimes develops non-cancerous growths, such as fibroids or polyps, both of which can inhibit uterine function. Another common condition associated with uterine abnormalities is endometriosis, which is when tissue similar to the uterine lining grows outside of the uterus in the pelvis.
  • Fallopian Tube Abnormalities: The fallopian tubes are two tubes that connect each ovary to the uterus; not only do they provide a path for released eggs to travel, but the fallopian tubes also serve as the place where the sperm meets the egg and attempts fertilization. Common fallopian tube abnormalities include blockages and tubal adhesions, which is when bands of scar tissue form within the fallopian tubes. These abnormalities can impact fertility by restricting the egg’s ability to reach the uterus or become fertilized by sperm.
  • Cervical Abnormalities: The cervix is essentially the gateway between the uterus and the vagina. One of its main functions is to allow fluids, such as menstrual blood and semen, to travel freely between the vagina and the uterus. Abnormalities such as cervical stenosis (i.e., narrowing of the cervical opening) and cervical polyps (i.e., benign growths on the cervix) can interfere with the sperm’s ability to enter the uterus.
Ovulation Disorders

Ovulation refers to when the ovary releases a mature egg into the fallopian tubes. For pregnancy to occur naturally, sperm must be present in the fallopian tubes at the exact right time of ovulation. However, conditions such as primary ovarian insufficiency (i.e., also sometimes referred to as premature menopause) and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can disrupt ovarian function, making it difficult to get pregnant without medical intervention.

Other Factors that Can Impact Female Fertility

Female infertility can sometimes be caused or exacerbated by a wide variety of lifestyle and environmental factors, including:

  • Smoking
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Drug use
  • Obesity
  • Poor nutrition
  • Stress
  • Excessive exercise
  • Environmental toxins
  • Occupational hazards
  • Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), especially if untreated
  • Previous reproductive surgeries, such as tubal ligation or removal of fibroids
  • Certain medications, such as chemotherapy drug
  • Genetic factors
  • Hormonal contraceptives, although any fertility issues are typically temporary

Diagnosis of Female Infertility

Diagnosing female infertility generally involves taking a detailed medical history and performing a physical examination to investigate possible fertility issues. This can include hormone testing, ovarian reserve testing, ultrasound imaging, genetic testing, and diagnostic procedures (e.g. hysterosalpingography, laparoscopy, etc.). The information gathered from these tests will help the fertility specialist individualize the best course of treatment for each patient.

Get Advanced Care of Female Infertility in Pennsylvania

At Main Line Fertility, we use the most cutting-edge technologies to create personalized care plans for every patient that walks through our fertility clinic doors, including those seeking help for female infertility. We understand the emotional impacts that infertility can have on individuals and couples who wish to become parents and offer a wide range of diagnostic and treatment modalities to address all types of infertility. With six convenient locations throughout the Greater Philadelphia area, you’re never far from the world-class fertility care you need to take your first step to parenthood.