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Infertility of Reproductive Health Biology Class 12

Last Updated : 21 Jun, 2023
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Infertility could be explained as a problem in conceiving a baby by a couple, majorly caused by a medical issue faced by a person or both in the couple. A recent report published by the Indian Society of Assisted Reproduction (ISAR) has suggested that approximately 10-14% of Indian couples face this issue.


Infertility is a medical condition in which a couple faces issues conceiving a baby. It could be due to a physical, medical, congenital, disease, drug, immunological, or psychological condition. Some recent research has also said that it is a lifestyle growing day by day. Various medical technologies have come now to cope with these conditions, which could help to diagnose and correct treatment of some of these disorders and enable couples to have children.

Also Read: Human Pregnancy

Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART)


It is a broad category of treatment technologies that includes all fertility treatments in which eggs or embryos are handled and implanted into the uterus of compatible women. These techniques could be classified based on whether the zygote transfer is involved or the gametes are directly involved. Following are some of these techniques illustrated.

Techniques that involve Zygote Transfer

In-vitro fertilization (IVF)

  • The term in-vitro here describes that the fusion of egg and sperm(fertilization) occurs outside the human body under similar conditions.
    • In this method, an egg is received from the wife or the donor, and sperm is received from the husband/donor and are fused in the laboratory provided with suitable conditions.
    • The fertilized egg is then transferred into the uterus (at 8-cell stage blastomere) of compatible women who can provide nourishment and full fill all the biological condition for the proper growth of a fetus.
    • As described above, the 8-celled embryo is transferred into the female body. The female here should be compatible to nourish the embryo, which could sometimes be the wife or a surrogate mother.
  • The In-vitro fertilization program is famously known as the Test-tube baby program. Louise Brown was the world’s first test tube, born on 25 July 1978 in Oldham, northwest England whereas Kanupriya Agarwal was India’s first test-tube baby, born on October 3, 1978.

ZIFT (Zygote Intro fallopian transfer)

The zygote is formed by in-vitro fertilization or in-vivo fertilization (fusion of gametes within the female body), which is an 8-celled embryo(blastomere) transferred into the uterus of a compatible female.

The process is transferring the blastomere into the uterus is known as Intra Uterine transfer.


Techniques that involve the transfer of Gamete

GIFT (Gamete intrafallopian transfer)

  • This involves the transfer of an ovum into the fallopian tube of a woman who cannot produce ova but is compatible for fertilization or to harbor or nourish an embryo.

IUI (Intra-uterine insemination)

  • In this method, semen is collected from a man or a healthy donor. It is finally introduced artificially into the vagina if the woman can support the compatibility for the movement of sperm into the uterus.

Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)

  • This method involves the injecting of sperm directly into the oocyte so that fertilization can take place. It could be adopted by couples in which the husband’s sperm cannot travel to the female egg or in females in which the egg cannot fuse to sperm.

FAQs on Infertility

Q1: What is the main cause of infertility?


Infertility is a medical condition in which a couple is not able to conceive a baby, it could be due to a medical condition that could be from anyone’s side in a couple. It could be a male who is not able to produce viable sperm or a female who is not able to produce ova or not able to provide a suitable environment for the nourishment of an embryo.

Q2: Can infertility be cured?


Infertility is a medical condition that could be cured by medication or by surgery. Recent research has established that it is more often a lifestyle disease. So, yes in 80-95% of cases, it is curable.

Q3: Can infertile women have periods?


Yes, infertile women can also have periods, but it is seen that the periods could be irregular, since it’s a complex phenomenon so we cannot just link it like with the periods.

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