Male Infertility Is More Common Than You Think

A few years ago a friend in her late 30's was going through fertility treatment and, even though I am only a few years younger, I thoughtlessly blamed it on her age.

"That wasn't the problem at all," she corrected me. It was her husband. After a few rounds of IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) they are now the parents of two healthy children -- the second one conceived when my friend was 40.

At least 10% of American couples are infertile and there is no question that it is more common when the woman is over the age of 35. However, male factor infertility is the primary cause in  about 40% of cases. The infertility numbers are roughly the same for women and the remaining 20% of cases can be attributed to both partners or an unknown factor.

While most women may not openly talk about infertility they often confide in friends and acquaintances with similar experiences. Men, on the other hand, are reluctant to discuss it at all.   For that reason Katie Couric dedicated a recent segment of her daytime show to discussing male infertility.   Men who experience this need to know that they are not alone.