Boosting Fertility Rates Around the World

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week. Society and the world at large are gradually becoming more open in talking about infertility and ways to overcome it. For many, infertility is an actual medical condition that requires consulting a doctor, taking medication, or a surgical procedure. Thankfully there are many doctors and clinics to assist in this process. For others, it is an issue of learning when is the best time to try to conceive, or having sex at all!

The following countries are trying creative ways to get couples home and having fun in the bedroom:

South Korea’s Health Ministry began turning the lights off early one day per month a few years back to encourage employees to go home and multiply.

In honor of Singapore’s 50th anniversary this year, any babies born this year will receive a goody bag with things such as clothes and diapers.

For any women in Russia who deliver on June 12, a national holiday, they have an opportunity to win prizes such as refrigerators or cars.

In Norway, mothers are entitled to 10 months of fully paid maternity leave or a full year at 80 percent pay.

In the United States as well, people receive a tax break depending on the number of children they have. As the birth rate continues to fall in many countries, it is essential that those struggling to conceive see a doctor as soon as possible to determine what the road block is. Talk to your doctor today about how you can conceive in the near future and be on the path to parenthood.

Posted in Blog

Frozen Embryos Remain Viable for Years


Dr. Tomer Singer

We don’t think that there is a significant impact when an embryo is frozen for a couple of years or for a decade,” said Dr. Tomer Singer, director of egg freezing for the North Shore LIJ Health System.

Singer said that Lenox Hill Human Reproduction in Manhattan, where he works, will store frozen embryos, charging about $500 to $600 each year, until a woman turns 51.

At that time, the embryos are either discarded or donated to research, he said.

See Dr. Tomer Singer’s comments from the article in the Daily News.

Posted in Blog, Center for Human Reproduction, egg freezing, Tomer Singer

Sperm Freezing On the Rise

13561641_sBy now most people have heard of egg freezing, especially as its popularity increases due to being a perk for female employees of large tech companies. But sperm freezing is gaining popularity as well and is proving to be an even easier way to plan for future fertility.

Surprisingly, sperm freezing has been around since the 1950s. There is very little recorded data as to just how many men have their sperm frozen but doctors say the numbers are on the rise. “Dr. Eric J. Forman, a fertility specialist in New Jersey, says men can remain fertile even in their 40s, 50s and 60s but there are certain things that can have a significant impact on fertility. Men who are facing chemotherapy, radiation or a medical condition that could affect their fertility may choose to freeze their sperm. In addition, some men are concerned about having a future accident or trauma to their genitals. Men who have opted for a vasectomy may choose to freeze their sperm beforehand since a reversal requires surgery and is not always successful.”

Freezing sperm is much easier than freezing eggs. To freeze eggs, a woman must take medication for several weeks and then undergo a minor surgical procedure to have them removed and frozen. Usually not more than 15 are removed for storage. When they are thawed, even if 50% of them survive, that’s still only seven or eight opportunities to conceive. With sperm freezing, it is much easier for men to provide a sample and when they do, each amount contains millions of sperm, making it much less of a big deal if 50% of the sperm do not survive.

If you have more questions about freezing your sperm or if you are interested in starting the process, talk to your doctor today. It’s never too early to plan for the future.

Posted in Fatherhood, News

IVF Children Complete a Happy Family

by Avner Hershlag, MD, Chief of the Center for Human Reproduction.


It is truly astonishing that a fashion house, which is supposed to be forward thinking of the trends in what men and women wear, is trying to set us back in time to the dark ages, when infertile men and women had no option of having children.

EltonJohn-DavidFurnish1978 saw the first #IVF baby, born in England. Fast forward in time and there are now more than six million human beings who have been born through this process. IVF entails fertilization outside the body in cases where the body is unable to achieve a pregnancy. Both egg and sperm are real. There is nothing synthetic about them (unlike many of the clothes made by Dolce and Gabbana).

Contrary to the premise that seeps through the commentaries from D&G, IVF does not represent a break in the loving relationship in couples. Infertility poses a significant threat to maintaining a bond between two partners – with no children to cement the relationship, and with the escalating anxiety and frustration in the face of failed attempts at procreation. IVF is the most powerful instrument to help infertile couples convert their loving relationship into a successful pursuit of a happy family.

Posted in Avner Hershlag, Blog, Fatherhood, Gay Fathers, IVF, Same-sex couples

“The Mindy Project” Tackles Fertility

As fertility becomes an ever more talked about topic, it was only a matter of time before it became a topic in entertainment.

In “The Mindy Project,” Mindy is trying to start her own fertility clinic, but is finding out that starting her own business is harder than expected. Besides the fact that the show displays a humorous take on fertility, it is encouraging to see fertility so talked about.

In the last 10 or so years especially, fertility has gone from being a topic only discussed with your spouse and doctor behind closed doors to a topic discussed during dinner parties and at bars and with employers. As technology continues to advance and astound us, more couples are finding success with getting help for their fertility woes, be it with in vitro fertilization (IVF), intrauterine insemination (IUI), donor eggs or spermreproductive surgery, or other types of assistance.

Fertility should never be something you struggle with alone. There are thousands of people who are going through the same thing as you. Talk to friend, join a support group, or make an appointment with your doctor to get the help you need in dealing with your fertility and finding out if there is a way you can become a parent after all.

Posted in Blog, Donor Sperm, Fertility Treatments, Infertility Contributing Factors, IUI, IVF, News

March is Endometriosis Awareness Month


March is ‪#‎Endometriosis‬ Month. Save the date for the 2nd Annual Worldwide ‪#‎EndoMarch‬ for endometriosis awareness, taking place in dozens of cities around the world on Saturday, March 28, 2015.

Registration for Washington, DC, and Palo Alto, California is now closed, as maximum capacity has been reached (ie, ‘sold out’). However, registration for the other independently-hosted USA & International events is still open — including New York, NY. To register for the events that are still open, please visit the following registration link:

Posted in Blog, Endometriosis, News

Reversing the Effect of Obesity on Fertility

There are countless negative effects of obesity on a person’s body. For women in particular, being obese can be a serious hindrance to getting pregnant.

To make the situation even worse, scientists have discovered that the negative effects of obesity don’t just harm the mother, but can actually be passed down to her children as well. Rebecca Robker, Associate Professor from the Robinson Research Institute at the University of Adelaide, says obesity can “result in altered growth of babies during pregnancy, and it permanently programs the metabolism of offspring, passing the damage caused by obesity from one generation to the next.”

Obesity leads to a specific stress response that damages the mitochondria in the body. Since all of your mitochondria come from your mother, whatever state hers is in is the state yours will be in as well. When researchers learned this, they were set on finding out how to stop this from happening. The researchers “identified the type of stress involved [and then] used compounds known to alleviate that stress in the cells. These compounds were highly successful in preventing the stress response, thereby stopping the damage from obesity being passed onto the offspring. It restored egg quality, embryo development and mitochondrial DNA to levels equivalent to those of a healthy mother.”

The best thing you can do to increase your chances of becoming pregnant are to exercise regularly and eat healthily. Talk to your doctor about any other concerns you might have about getting pregnant and find out how you could soon be on the path to parenthood.

Posted in Blog, Improve your Fertility, Infertility, Infertility Contributing Factors, Lifestyle, News

Ancient Fertility Stones Found in Israel

Over the years, archaeologists have been able to learn vast amounts about an ancient culture by uncovering artifacts, whether they are art, writing or objects in the ground. Recently they’ve found that cultures 8000 years ago were just as concerned about fertility as we are today.

In several different locations, archaeologists have uncovered stone formations that are akin to worship sites, suggesting that these were places where people would pray to fertility gods. Rocks in the shape of both a vulva and a penis have been found at several locations. Although archaeologists aren’t sure what went on during these ceremonies, the formations are strongly reminiscent of other cults whose artifacts have been discovered nearby.

Today, we have brilliant minds and state-of-the-art technology to help us figure out why some people are unable to conceive. If you have been experiencing difficulty getting pregnant, don’t leave your success up to fate; talk to a doctor to find out what can be done to help you achieve your dream of having a child.

Posted in Blog, News

Tips for a Valentine’s Day in the Midst of Infertility

While Valentine’s Day is a day meant to celebrate the love between you and your significant other, it often can turn into a day of heavy expectations and comparison with those around you. It can be an especially emotional day if you are currently struggling with infertility. This Valentine’s, here are a few ways to keep your day happy:

—Don’t Expect Perfection
No one is perfect—including you! If you or your honey aren’t super romantic, that probably won’t change overnight. Even small ways of showing your love, even if it’s just saying “thank you for going through life with me,” can be special.

—Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
People only post their highlights on social media, not the normalcy of day-to-day life. Put down your smartphone and focus your time and energy on the person you are with.

—Take a Day Off From Fertility Talk
If you are trying to become pregnant, that thought is no doubt consuming your mind. Set aside this one day to be about just the two of you. Agree to not talk about fertility at all; reminisce about when you first started dating or what made you fall in love with that person in the first place.

Let Valentine’s be a day you look forward to because of the love you already have in your life. But do not struggle alone with infertility; talk to your doctor about what the issue might be, and begin your journey to parenthood.

Posted in Blog, Infertility, News

How Being Celiac Could Affect Your Fertility

Doctors are now suggesting that if you have unexplained infertility, get tested for celiac disease.

Celiac affects about one in 100 people. If you are celiac, you cannot consume wheat, barley or rye; doing so results in intestinal damage, malnutrition, and other issues.

A research team recently pooled results from previously published research studies to explore the link between celiac disease and infertility. “Women with infertility were 3.5 times more likely to have celiac disease than women who didn’t have difficulty conceiving, the analysis found, based on a review of three studies including 449 women with infertility. For women with no known cause for their infertility, the connection was even stronger. These women were six times more likely to have celiac disease, based on data from five studies including 422 women with unexplained infertility.”

Typically doctors first send women experiencing difficulty conceiving to an endocrinologist to investigate hormonal issues or imbalances. Women are told to record their basal body temperature (BBT) for about three months to see if they are ovulating regularly; if there are still issues after that time, women may also be asked to undergo a blood or urine test. But because doctors and researchers are discovering that celiac is quite often the issue with being unable to conceive, they are recommending doing a test for celiac the first time a woman comes in to see a doctor.

If you are concerned about your inability to conceive or are wondering if you have celiac, talk to a doctor today.

Posted in Infertility, Infertility Contributing Factors, Lifestyle, News