Getting pregnant, if at all possible, is a lot harder than most people think. While about 60 percent of couples will conceive without medical assistance within six months of trying, one in eight couples are struggling with infertility issues.
Infertility is commonly defined as the inability to get pregnant, or maintain a pregnancy, after adequately trying for 12 months (and in some cases for a full six months) without medical assistance. And while there is still so much we don’t really know about the condition, we do know that age, physical health and lifestyle choices can contribute to a person’s fertility, and we know that infertility affects men and women equally.
A couple’s infertility is highly nuanced to the combination of both partners’ bodies, hormones and health issues, but the general fact of the matter is that infertility is a highly overlooked issue unless you are personally dealing with it. In honor of National Infertility Awareness Week, here are 12 statistics that will open your eyes to the condition.
The number of women between 15-44 in the United States who have difficulty getting and staying pregnant. That’s 12 percent of all women, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The estimated percentage of sexually experienced men who have reported seeing a fertility doctor at least once, the CDC reports.
The percentage of struggling couples in which the male partner contributes to, or is the cause of, infertility, per the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.
The percentage of female infertility caused by tobacco and cigarette smoking, according to ASRM.
The number of women who suffer from polycystic ovarian syndrome. Affecting 10 percent of women, PCOS is the most common cause of female infertility, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
The estimated percentage of male infertility cases tied to the most common correctable cause, varicoceles, or abnormal veins surrounding the testicles, according to WebMD.
The percentage of infertility cases that can be treated by conventional therapies like surgery or medication, ASRM reports...
... while only this percentage of infertility treatments include in vitro fertilization and the like.
The average cost of a single cycle of IVF in the United States, as reported by the ASRM.
The estimated percentage of IVF cycles that produce a live birth.
The percentage of couples that have more than one factor contributing to their infertility as a pair, per ASRM.
The percentage of infertility cases that have no identifiably known cause.
Read more of our National Infertility Awareness Week coverage:
4 Things Doctors Wish They Knew About Infertility by Anna Almendrala
The Truth About Men’s Infertility by Well Rounded NY
5 Things Infertility Taught Me by Jessica Melcher