Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ovulation Detection

Ovulation Detection

Normally, a reproductive age woman will have regular menstrual cycle intervals every 28-30 x 4-5 days. Prior to the onset of the menstrual flow, premenstrual symptoms are common (including breast tenderness, headaches, abdominal bloating, and mood swings), which generally reflect the cycle’s normal changes in reproductive hormones. A history of regular menstrual cycle intervals with premenstrual symptoms is fairly strong clinical evidence that ovulation is occurring monthly.

Ovulation normally occurs about 14 days (2 weeks) prior to the onset of the next menstrual flow. In women with very regular menstrual cycle intervals, counting back 14 days from the expected next menstrual flow provides a rough estimate of the date of ovulation.

Ovulation tests include ovulation predictor kits that use test strips that are dipped in urine daily, which cause a chemical reaction that changes the color of the patient’s test result when LH is present. When a mature egg has been developed within the ovary, the body signals the ovary to get the egg ready for fertilization and to release the egg (ovulate) with a surge in the hormone LH. When the patient’s concentration of LH is great enough to suggest the LH surge (trigger to ovulate) then the patient’s test line on the test strip is often equal or darker than the test strip’s reference line. Since the egg normally will ovulate about 36 hours (one and a half days) after the onset of the LH surge, once the test strip is initially positive for the LH surge then ovulation can be expected within a day or so. These test strips are usually accurate for women, but sometimes they don’t seem to be reliable for (work effectively for) a particular woman.

Ultrasound examinations of the ovaries can determine the size of follicles (ovarian cysts that contain an egg) and serial ultrasound exams during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle (egg development phase) can usually determine with high accuracy when a mature egg has developed. Once the egg is mature, ovulation can be triggered by administering the hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), which acts exactly like the LH surge to trigger ovulation. In this way, the timing of ovulation can generally be predicted accurately within a few hours.

Dr. Eric Daiter at The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC has extensive experience with ovulation problems and ovulation detection. He would be happy to help you. For an appointment to discuss your situation with Dr. Daiter, please call the office at 908 226 0250. Visit us on the web at or

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Ovulation and Infertility

Ovulation and Infertility

Successful human reproduction normally requires the coordination of several different events, including ovulation (release of a mature fertilization capable egg from the woman’s ovary), sperm production and release (ejaculation of mature motile sperm within seminal fluid), fertilization of the egg in the fallopian tube (sperm moves through the uterine cervix and uterine cavity into the tubes), and implantation of the developing pre-implantation embryo inside the uterine cavity.

Normally, a reproductive age woman will produce one mature egg per month, which is released from the ovary during ovulation. The eggs mature in ovarian cysts called follicles and during the “follicular phase” (egg developing phase) of the menstrual cycle the hormone FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) has a primary role in stimulating the maturation of eggs. Once the egg is developed, then the hormone LH surges to trigger the release of the egg at ovulation. After ovulation, there is an increase in the ovarian production of the hormone progesterone, which modifies and enhances the endometrial lining in preparation for embryo implantation.

Many abnormalities of the menstrual cycle and ovulation can occur and any of these problems will generally reduce fertility or cause infertility. A Reproductive Endocrinologist can suggest a diagnostic evaluation and infertility treatments based on the findings of the diagnostic tests.

Dr. Eric Daiter at The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC has extensive experience with all types of ovulation problems and menstrual irregularities. Dr. Daiter would be happy to help you to determine the cause of an ovulation problem and suggest treatment options. For an appointment to discuss your situation with Dr. Daiter, please call the office at 908 226 0250. Please visit us on the web at and

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Friday, October 16, 2009

Hysterosalpingogram or HSG


Infertility can be caused by either male of female factors. Female infertility involves ovulation dysfunctions or abnormalities of the female pelvis. The normal events that occur for successful human reproduction involve (1) sperm is placed within the vagina during intercourse, (2) some of this sperm will move into the cervical mucus (where it can normally reside comfortably for several days), (3) sperm travels from the cervical mucus through the uterine cavity into the fallopian tubes, (4) the sperm fertilizes a mature egg within the fallopian tube, (5) the fertilized egg (preimplantation embryo) continues to develop within the fallopian tube for 4-5 days, (6) the developing embryo enters the uterine cavity and it remains unattached for about a day, (7) the embryo becomes apposed to the uterine lining cells (endometrium) and initiates implantation into this lining, and (8) the implanted embryo continues to develop from nutrients obtained from the maternal uterus (womb). If there is any abnormality in this sequence of events, the success of human reproduction can be severely limited (and may result in infertility).

The hysterosalpingogram or HSG is a radiology test that uses the injection of a radio-opaque distention fluid under continuous fluoroscopy to allow the operator (usually a radiologist but sometimes an infertility doctor) to see the contour of the uterine cavity and the patency of the fallopian tubes. This test is highly informative, relatively inexpensive, generally safe, and quick to perform (mostly under 10 minutes for a skilled operator). The hysterosalpingogram allows the doctor to detect filling defects within the uterine cavity, possibly caused by endometrial polyps (organized abnormal overgrowths of the normal uterine lining cells), submucosal fibroids (smooth muscle tumors projecting into the uterine cavity), or intrauterine adhesions (synechia). The presence of structural abnormalities such as polyps, submucosal fibroids, synechiae, or blocked fallopian tubes can reduce fertility and cause female infertility. The hysterosalpingogram is also commonly thought to remove or “blow out” any material that might be obstructing the inside of the fallopian tubes and thereby the HSG may itself improve fertility.

A sonohysterogram (aka saline ultrasound or hysterosonogram) is a different radiological test that uses the injection of saline (salt water) into the uterine cavity while examining the uterus with a high resolution ultrasound. Sonohysterography is also safe, relatively inexpensive, and informative. A sonohysterogram allows the operator to visualize abnormalities of the uterine cavity (polyps, fibroids, scar tissue) with similar or sometimes greater sensitivity when compared to the hysterosalpingogram. However, the sonohysterogram usually has significantly less reliability when viewing the fallopian tubes, as compared to a hysterosalpingogram. Thus, we usually recommend starting with a hysterosalpingogram and if additional testing is required for abnormalities of the uterine cavity then we consider performing a sonohysterogram.

Many women have apparently had painful experiences with the hysterosalpingogram and therefore the procedure has a blemished reputation among infertility patients. At The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, Dr. Daiter offers to personally perform every hysterosalpingogram (HSG) that he suggests for his patients since discomfort with the procedure is truly rare when he performs it. For an appointment to discuss your situation with Dr. Daiter, please call the office at 908 226 0250. Visit us on the web at or

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Monday, October 12, 2009

IUI cost

IUI, Artificial Insemination, treatment cycle cost (2009)

IUI (intrauterine insemination) is ideally performed just prior to ovulation (the release of a fertilizable mature egg). The sperm may survive and be able to fertilize a mature egg for several days following artificial intrauterine insemination (IUI) but the mature egg is probably only able to be fertilized for 1 to 2 days after ovulation.

The IUI procedure requires that the semen sample be prepared (washed) to remove the sperm (the male reproductive product that contains the potential father’s DNA) from the semen (liquid secreted from the seminal vesicles that contains prostaglandins). If prostaglandins are placed within the uterus, as would be the case if IUI were performed without washing the sample free of semen, then the woman would suffer terrible uterine cramps for several hours. Generally, in New Jersey IUI costs roughly 200-400 dollars and the washing procedure costs roughly 150-300 dollars.

The total cost of an IUI treatment cycle varies considerably depending on whether fertility ovulation enhancing medications are used. These medications can be expensive and the monitoring that is required for their safe use is also potentially expensive.

In natural ovulation cycles with IUI, where no fertility medications are used, the woman allows her egg to mature on its own and an IUI is performed at the time of ovulation. When a woman has highly predictable menstrual cycle intervals then ovulation can be predicted fairly accurately to occur about 14 days before the onset of the next expected menstrual flow. This timing can be confirmed with an ovulation predictor kit, which generally uses LH detection to determine when the LH surge occurs (the LH surge triggers the release of the mature egg at ovulation). LH ovulation predictor kits often contain several LH detection sticks (one test stick is used each day) and cost about 25-50 dollars per kit. Sometimes, several ovulation predictor kits are required per month if the timing of ovulation is less predictable. If the available ovulation predictor kits are not reliable for a particular woman or if additional accuracy is necessary, then serial ultrasound exams and blood work (for estradiol and LH concentrations) usually is able to determine follicular development more accurately. Often 2-4 ultrasound exams and blood tests are required per cycle. Each ultrasound exam costs roughly 150-350 dollars and blood work at Quest Diagnostics or LabCorp for these hormones can also be a few hundred dollars.

Clomiphene citrate (Clomid) is an ovulation inducing medication that may be effective to regularize or shorten the menstrual cycle intervals if a woman has very irregular menstrual cycle intervals. Clomid often costs less than 100 dollars per cycle and a few ultrasounds or blood tests may be suggested to monitor egg development.

Controlled ovarian hyperstimulation to produce many mature eggs per cycle provide “more targets” for the sperm to attempt to fertilize at IUI and provide a greater per cycle success rate. The medications used for controlled ovarian hyperstimulation are expensive, since each ampule of medication costs 35 – 80 dollars and a woman may use 2 - 6 amps of medication a day for up to 7-10 days (1,000 to 4,000 dollars a cycle depending on medication requirements). Monitoring egg development using 2-5 ultrasound examinations per cycle and blood work 2-5 times per cycle is required to safely administer these medications.

You can save a considerable amount of money as well as increase your chances for success if you consult a Reproductive Endocrinologist (infertility expert) early on to review the range and cost of infertility treatments that may be effective for your unique situation.

Dr. Eric Daiter at The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC has extensive experience with all types of infertility, the appropriate use of IUI, and he would be happy to help you. For an appointment to discuss your situation with Dr. Daiter, please call the office at 908 226 0250.
For more information please visit us on the web at

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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Infertility Doctor

Can't afford infertility treatment? Dr. Eric Daiter is an infertility doctor who can help you.

A couple that is struggling with their attempt to become parents is often under significant stress. This stress may impact the very relationship that initially brought the couple together. Men and women generally expect to have the opportunity to have children and develop their own family as soon as they decide to do so. Concerns with infertility can be frightening, stressful, and ultimately destructive.

Medicine has developed a great deal of information about infertility, including a growing appreciation of the causes of infertility and effective treatments for these causes of infertility. Reproductive Endocrinologists are infertility specialists with special training in the useful tests and treatments for couples suffering with fertility problems. Consulting with an experienced infertility expert can be very helpful in several different ways: you can learn about (1) the normal physiological events that must occur for fertility to be successful, (2) the male and female infertility tests that are available to determine where a problem may exist, and (3) the infertility treatments that should improve your chances of conception.

Infertility treatments can vary in terms of their invasiveness (more or less natural), aggressiveness (more or less focused), cost (more or less expensive), or suitability for a particular couple (more or less customized to match the couple’s own unique personal desires for care).

Dr. Eric Daiter at The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC has extensive experience in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility and he would be happy to help you customize a management plan that fits your own lifestyle. For an appointment to discuss your situation with Dr. Daiter, please call the office at 908 226 0250. You can also visit us on the web at

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Friday, October 9, 2009

Infertility Treatment Cost

The cost of some infertility treatments can be unaffordable, or they may place a significant financial burden on a couple. Fortunately, there are usually a range of different infertility treatment alternatives that could be effective for a couple, based on the results of specific male and female infertility tests. Some of these infertility treatments may be covered by insurance or less expensive in general. Often, an infertility expert can help you to develop a management plan that is both effective and affordable.

It is important to understand your specific medical insurance benefits as well as the costs of different infertility treatments. At The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC your insurance benefits are checked before your initial appointment so that you know whether you have any out of pocket costs for your infertility treatment. During your initial consultation, Dr. Eric Daiter fully reviews your situation and the full range of appropriate and effective infertility treatments. Throughout your care, you actively participate in deciding on an infertility treatment management plan that you are comfortable with.

For more information, see our website at

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Sunday, June 1, 2008

IUI Process Explained

As couples exhaust their non-medical resources and steps toward conception prove futile, they often contact their trusted physician or other fertility expert for advice in what ways to proceed. For many, intrauterine insemination, or IUI, appears as a viable option and is one of the lesser-invasive procedures offered.

A first step in the IUI process involves tests that help provide a better prediction of what day a woman’s egg is released. Ultrasounds can be used to monitor egg development within the ovarian follicles. Urine tests are used to identify and measure the luteinizing hormone levels that rise significantly in the hours preceding ovulation. These urine ovulation predictor tests may be administered at home and can be read by the couple trying to conceive. After ovulation predictor kit analysis provides the best choice of days for the treatment, preparations will be made for that day. This involves readying the sperm to be used for insemination. This sperm will be examined and shown to be fertile through testing. It is also necessary to wash the sperm to remove any chemicals that might cause unwanted reactions within the woman’s uterus. Often, antibiotics and protein supplements are added to the semen to enhance its viability and the seminal fluid is removed so that concentrated sperm is all that will be used for the procedure. This process of sperm washing is often very helpful in situations where the male partner possesses a low sperm count or the sperm is experiencing difficulty surviving its trip to the womb. The IUI process is often used successfully in cases where the female does not posses a partner that will be supplying the sperm, but might be using instead sperm chosen from a bank of sperm donors. Once the sperm has been readied, on the designated day, the process will begin. If there exists a problem with a woman’s ovulation, a doctor might feel the need to prescribe fertility drugs in order to amp up ovulation to release more eggs prior to the designated day. The sperm is inserted in the woman’s uterus by way of a catheter. By placing the sperm nearer the eggs, the sperm is given a better chance to fertilize the egg and stimulate a successful implantation and pregnancy.

Intrauterine insemination is often one of the first medical steps women choose because of its relative inexpensiveness as compared to in-vitro fertilization. IUI is less invasive, but is also proven less effective, with a success rate below 25%, where IVF has a success rate nearing 60%. It is best to contact a physician or fertility clinic in order to arrive at the best course of action.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of ovulation testing. For more information, please visit

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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Using Fertility Awareness Methods to Focus Conceptive Efforts

As couples embark upon the second stage of family planning, conception, after many years of practicing contraception, they may soon find that becoming pregnant might just be more difficult than they had previous believed. Just think: all of the right conditions must be in place for sperm to live to reach an egg, for an egg to be fertilized, and for that egg to succeed within a woman’s body. Many reproductively minded women find it helpful to become more aware of their bodies’ cycles in order to both better know themselves and increase their chances of conceiving. There are three signs that women can monitor successfully and thus feel empowered that they are actively involved in their successful conception. Please note that “self tests” for determining when ovulation is occurring are not always accurate or reliable. If you seem to be having problems with these tests, you can consult with your physician about more reliable tests that are available.

The first step in using Fertility Awareness Methods (FAM) to promote pregnancy involves the female’s Basal Body Temperature (BBT). A woman should take her body temperature in the same place (orally or vaginally) and at the same time each day, before daily activity begins, in order to be most accurate and most beneficial. Basal Body Temperature charts are readily available for free download on the Internet; each daily body temperature should be recorded on one of these charts with dots and connected with straight lines. When the full monthly cycle has been charted, the six temperatures occurring before the midcycle rise should be highlighted and the highest of these six duly noted. Another line, called the coverline will need be drawn above this highest temperature demarcating the time when ovulation most likely occurred. This charting should continue regularly in conjunction with the next two observations until conception is achieved successfully.

The next step a woman can take is making sure to observe the consistency of the cervical fluid. Beginning with the last day of bleeding from menstruation, it is helpful to check cervical fluid; always using clean hands, the vaginal lips should be separated and the fluid within swiped with fingers. It is helpful to check this at each restroom visit. Careful attention to the integrity and consistency of the fluid should be observed and charted. By putting finger and thumb together with fluid, pull fingers apart and check to see if it is sticky and tacky, or if it immediately pulls apart. Note when it is sticky and slippery, similar to egg white consistency – this is indicative of fertile days. Pay special attention as well to any sensations felt vaginally and note them. The wettest and stickiest day of the fluid checks should be noted as the day of optimum fertility and indicative that ovulation has occurred.

Perhaps the most difficult observation is the last one, and it involves checking the position of the cervix. Best observed during the fertile (wet and sticky) time preceding ovulation, in the squatted position, a woman should use their middle finger and note the condition of their cervix. Is it especially wet, high, soft, or open? A dot can be used on the chart to denote a closed and firm cervix, a small circle to show a partially open cervix, and a larger circle to show a high and open, soft cervix. Any other symbols can be used as well, just keep straight what each one means. When the cervix is soft, open, and high, a woman is at her most fertile and receptive of the male’s sperm. Take note of this, and compare with the results from the other two observations.

By combining and cross-referencing the data found with each observation method, a woman will successfully increase her chances of conceiving as well as becoming more aware of the changes within her body. Learning to listen to the body and being aware of each of its stages are ways to become actively involved in conception. Seeking advice from a doctor is always beneficial as well, so never hesitate in asking questions.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of ovulation testing. For more information, please visit or

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Friday, May 30, 2008

Intercourse Positions to Aid in Conception and Gender Selection

Making a baby is supposed to be fun, right? For millions of couples each year, however, this becomes an arduous task fraught with anticipation, disappointment, and hard to avoid stress. Stress in the mind leads to adverse conditions, especially in a woman’s body, and is to be avoided. But how can you avoid stress when sex has become a full-time job, a calendar watching, temperature-taking sojourn for a conception-minded couple? Maybe try mixing it up a little. Perhaps a little hiatus from having a baby one-mindedness could help. A little diversionary route into gender selection techniques might just be the change of focus that is needed to get things headed in the right direction and make conception a reality. The following discussion is very controversial as it is not based on high quality scientific research, but is presented as it is often a focus of discussion.

Conception chances increase by making sure that the man’s sperm is deposited as closely as possible to the woman’s cervix, so positions allowing for maximum depth of penetration are most advantageous. Remember gravity can be your friend when attempting conception, so “woman on top” positioning is not the best for conception due to the necessary upward travel of the sperm. The objective is to make sure all of the male’s sperm has its best chance to reach the cervix, so gravitationally challenged positioning could allow an excessively unnecessary amount of the sperm to leak out. A position that fits this criteria and, according to a method developed by Landrum B. Shettles will help have a male offspring, is the rear entry or “doggie” position. Allowing the sperm to be deposited nearest the cervix gives the best chance for shorter living Y-chromosome, male producing sperm to fertilize an egg. Shettles also advises to have sexual intercourse as near to ovulation as possible so don’t put those basal body temperature charts away! Allowing Y chromosome sperm this smaller distance to travel increases the chance for its survival. A female orgasm is also advisable to increase Y chromosome-favorable alkaline secretions within the vagina. For chances resultant in a female offspring to be increased, Shettles recommends having sexual intercourse in the missionary position (man on top), but with shallow penetration. This idea is motivated by the X chromosome’s (girl sperm) ability to live longer than the male sperm. To promote female egg fertilization, Shettles recommends that intercourse happen several days before ovulation in order to give these long living, girl producing sperm a better chance of outlasting the Y chromosome sperm and reaching the egg.

Most couples having trouble conceiving will of course be happy with any gender offspring, but perhaps a little change of focus might be the variety necessary to achieve success. As always, ask your doctor for more tips and hints, and remember to enjoy these attempts, relieve some stress, and conception just might be easier!

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of infertility treatment. For more information, please visit or

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Ovulation Pain (Mittelschmerz)

The decision to (try and) conceive is one made excitedly by couples each day. One of the first steps to scientifically better chances of this happening is for the woman to determine approximately at what time each month she ovulates. This does change slightly from month to month, but with Basal Temperature Charting, an approximation can be made and is very helpful for many women. While basal charting can be tedious and time-consuming, some women find that charting their time of ovulation is indeed no problem whatsoever. 20% of all women do have this easier time of pinpointing ovulation, but for a not so desirable reason. Nearly a quarter of women experience pain with ovulation called mittelschmerz, in German, meaning middle pain. This pain happens in the middle of a woman’s cycle, at ovulation, and this is where it gets its name.

This middle pain experienced by some women is not always felt in the middle (of their abdomen) but usually on the side, depending on which side the ovary releasing the egg that month resides.
The degree of pain is different from woman to woman, with some experiencing nausea due to intense pain, while others might experience merely a dull pain resembling indigestion. The length of this pain varies as well and, for some, is accompanied by bloody discharge. Scientists are not sure why some women experience this pain and others do not, but speculate that the blood released along with the egg during ovulation might in some way aggravate the lining of affected women’s abdominal cavities. Treating this pain, which should not last more than 24 hours, is relatively easy. Most women find that warm baths, warm compresses to the abdomen, and over-the-counter pain medicines such as ibuprofen work well enough to relieve the pressure and pain. Women for which mittelschmerz causes extreme pain that truly disrupts their daily living may find it necessary to take some sort of prescribed birth control pill to stop ovulation all-together. With no ovulation, no pain is experienced, but women trying to conceive, obviously, should not take this route.

Because this 20% of women experience this true indicator of when they ovulate, they do, in a sense have an advantage when deciding to conceive. Their charting might not need to involve a thermometer whatsoever, but merely a dot showing when, each month, this middle pain begins and ends. Having sexual intercourse in the days preceding this monthly pain would be advantageous and chances of conceiving, provided normal fertility exists in male and female partner, are quite good.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of ovulation testing. For more information, please visit

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Basal Body Temperature Charting for Conception

So you’ve made the decision. You and your partner have decided to start a family. If you’re like most couples, you’ve spent a lot of time and energy trying not to conceive; be prepared, it might take more time, energy, and perseverance, to get that baby started. While being conscious of lifestyle (i.e. health, exercise, diet, etc.) is necessary, there are other things that a woman can do to know her body better and help to maximize the chances of conceiving. Guys, you have your own health considerations to consider, but it is important to keep in mind that charting basal body temperature in order to conceive a child is the first effort made when a pregnancy does not occur naturally. It can be an arduous and frustrating endeavor at times, and the woman usually feels the brunt of responsibility for success in determining and interpreting the parameters necessary to achieve a budding pregnancy.

Most women are well familiar with their menstrual cycle inasmuch as they know when it begins due to the beginning flow of their period. Knowing when ovulation occurs requires more attention and observation. This observation of changes in body temperature as an indicator of ovulation is known as Basal Body Temperature Charting. Let’s start by looking at the monthly menstrual cycle itself. The cycle can be observed as two halves: the first part being the follicular phase, the second, the luteal phase. During the follicular, or proliferative phase, follicles that have been growing in the uterus for much of the year mature and begin to compete with each other for dominance. As estrogen levels increase, the clear follicular winner (or sometimes two) emerges. Estrogen, oft described as a “cool” hormone in temperature, is secreted at highest levels during the follicular phase, and lowers a woman’s body temperature minutely. For this to be adequately observed, a digital thermometer is a necessity, for the difference is in the decimals, and body temperature should be taken orally (vaginally for more precision) at the same time each morning, before ingesting anything. This observation should be recorded on a daily chart, and on a month-to-month basis, a discernable pattern should emerge. The second half of the cycle, the luteal, or secretory phase, begins as the follicle is released, usually 6 to 7 days after the temperature drop. Progesterone, a “warm” hormone, then takes over, and a woman’s body temperature can be observed to rise .2 degrees higher than the temperatures of the previous 6 days. This temperature will then stay elevated for at least 3 consecutive days, denoting that ovulation has truly occurred. Charting this temperature rise, and keeping in mind the temperature drop, can help better discern when ovulation occurs, and allow a couple to pinpoint the times and days to have intercourse and better their chances of conceiving.

Observing basal temperature, though, admittedly tedious, is a viable non-medical, intervention-free tool at a couple’s disposal when attempting conception. The best a male (or non prospective child bearing partner) can do during this time is listen and be supportive; otherwise, the charting and observation that most always falls to the female can often result in feelings of isolation and insularity to the burden bearing partner.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of ovulation testing. For more information, please visit

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Eating With Fertility in Mind

Everyone is aware of a good diet’s affect upon energy and health. Men and women feel better, are more energetic, and yes, more fertile when eating foods that are nutritious and vitamin packed. Certain foods (and drinks) are detrimental to viable sperm production in men and ovulation in women, so attention to particularly vitamin-rich and nutritious meal plans is essential to couples hoping to conceive.

Watching what you eat is vital for conception. Obesity has a negative effect upon fertility because of its adverse effects upon sex hormone secretion and metabolism. Obesity in women can lead to polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, a disorder that decreases regular ovulation and menstruation, and causes a woman’s body to release larger amounts of androgenic hormones (including higher testosterone). PCOS is a leading cause of infertility among women of reproductive age. Obesity is a leading cause of erectile dysfunction in men, as well as being proven to reduce sperm formation. Obesity is not the only reason to watch nutritional intake when trying to conceive. Researchers have proven the age-old myth of increased male potency from eating oysters. Oysters are advantageous to male fertility because they are abundant in the zinc men need to maintain high levels of semen and blood testosterone. Studies have shown that men should consume high amounts of zinc, calcium, and vitamins D and E, in order to have increased sperm motility and potency for impregnating their hopeful partners.

Many women are unhappy to learn of the adverse effects of alcohol and caffeine upon fertility. Research has shown that drinking any amount of alcohol when trying to conceive reduces a woman’s chances by up to 50 percent. Alcohol has shown to be a factor in many ovulatory dysfunctions as well as altering levels of estrogen in the body. For men, alcohol can cause sperm producing cells within the testicles to become ineffective or even perish. Caffeine’s effects are different for women and men; while bad for women’s fertility, it seems to have a positive effect on the motility, or movement of men’s sperm, especially when ingested in the hour immediately before making love.

Recent studies have shown that women should drink and eat soy products moderately when trying to conceive. While soy products have positive effects upon women in menopause or inhibiting growth of certain cancerous cells, in excess, soy has shown to be detrimental to conception. Other nuts and many legumes are extremely rich in the protein hopeful mothers need to be more fertile and come highly recommended for healthy snacking and eating options.

A healthy focus on diet and exercise are just two easy ways to increase a couple’s chances of conceiving. Talk to your physician today to receive more helpful hints.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of infertility treatment. For more information, please visit

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Monday, April 14, 2008

Personal Lubrication and Conception

A very popular television advertisement proudly proclaims: “Having a baby changes everything”. A truer statement has never been uttered, as the birth of a child is definitely one of the most amazing occurrences that life has to offer. The growth, development, responsibility, and awe that follows is nothing short of spectacular, though often frightening and exasperating as well. Sleep becomes a premium, as well as peace and quiet, but nothing in the world will ever replace the wonder a baby can provide. Birth is magical, but birth can never occur without the often misunderstood and quite complicated nexus of sperm and egg that is conception. Just the right conditions have to be present, and many couples become thwarted by this process, adding strain and stress to their relationships.

Stress, as we all know, affects not only our mental attitude, but also our bodies. In women, stress in their mind often manifests itself in their bodies as vaginal dryness, hindering both the desire to have sex and the ideal chemical situations for successful conception. Millions of couples each year turn to the personal lubrication market in their effort for more enjoyable intercourse, and among these couples are those who are also trying to conceive. Reading the labels to make sure the lubrications they choose are spermicide-free, couples feel safe to proceed, often looking at their calendars, checking their body temperatures, and amping up the romance, although achieving conception after failed attempts can often feel programmed or rudimentary, in efforts to conceive naturally. Could their choice of lubricant, though free of spermicide, actually be thwarting conception for other reasons of which they are not aware?

Fertility aside, the vulnerable mucous membranes of the vagina are very susceptible to irritation by preservatives and other ingredients often found in personal lubricants. Women feel protected by using preservative-free lubricants, but the slippery, gooey, viscosity lubricants provide, that is indeed part of their allure and a much-touted selling point, actually hinders the migration of the sperm to the cervical mucous where conception can take place; though the vagina might feel more hydrated and penetration is aided by this slipperiness, overhydration caused by lubrication can reduce sperm motility. Another detriment to the successful sperm migration to egg is the acidic environment created by the vaginal secretions at all times except just before ovulation, when the secretions and vaginal pH become more alkaline and advantageous for sperm survival. The advantageous pH needs to be between 7 and 8.5, and many personal lubricants actually have a pH as low as 3.5, resulting in a harmful and disadvantageous vaginal situation for sperm prosperity. Thankfully, there are several lubrication products (as well as common household products) that promote sperm migration and survival, so don’t dismay. These methods will be profiled in detail in a successive article.

Conception, though sometimes elusive, can be achieved with education, knowledge, and of course, perseverance, and all the work put in is duly rewarded when a successful pregnancy is attained. Conception-minded couples should talk to their physician to receive both encouragement and more information.

About the Author: Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine, LLC, a leading provider of infertility treatment. For more information, please visit

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Monday, December 31, 2007

Female Infertility Factors

If you have had difficulty conceiving for more than twelve months, or six months if you are over 35 years of age, you may be wondering if you are infertile. Researchers estimate that one in six couples face fertility challenges as a result of male or female health complications. There are multitudes of factors that can affect your chances of conception. Here we will briefly outline three major causes of infertility in women: endometriosis, fallopian tube damage or blockage, and ovulation disorders.

Endometriosis occurs when uterine tissue shed during a woman’s “period” implants outside of the uterus. The implanted tissue responds to the hormonal cycle and continues to grow, shed, and bleed in sync with the lining of the uterus each month. This can lead to inflammation and eventually scarring which adversely affects functions of the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes. Pelvic pain and infertility are common in women with endometriosis. Upon examination, more than 40% of infertile women of reproductive age are found to have endometriosis. Laparoscopic surgery to remove abnormal tissue is a commonly used treatment option for this condition.

Fallopian tube damage usually results from inflammation of the fallopian tube. This blocks the passage of the egg through the fallopian tubes on its way to fertilization and implantation in the uterus. Chlamydia, a sexually transmitted disease, is the most frequent cause. Tubal inflammation can cause pain and fever, or it may go unnoticed. Tubal damage is the major risk factor for ectopic pregnancy. Here a fertilized egg implants in the fallopian tubes. One episode of tubal infection may cause fertility difficulties. The risk of ectopic pregnancy increases with each occurrence of tubal infection.

Some cases of female infertility are caused by ovulation disorders. Disruption in the part of the brain that regulates ovulation can cause low levels of luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone. Even slight irregularities in the hormone system can affect ovulation. Specific causes of hypothalamic-pituitary disorders include injury, tumors, excessive exercise and starvation. Ovulation-stimulating drugs, follicle-stimulating hormones, human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG), and in vitro fertilization are possible treatments for this condition.

If you are one of the many couples experiencing problems with conception talk to your general practitioner. Most of these problems can be resolved with medical treatment or lifestyle adjustments. Your doctor will be able to diagnose any conditions present and give you treatment options, or refer you to a specialist.

About the Author:

Eric Daiter has been sponsored by The NJ Center for Reproductive Medicine, a leading provider of infertility treatment, to write information about endometriosis symptoms. For more information, please visit

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