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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Vitamins C and E for Men's Fertility

 Better Sperm To Get Pregnant Over 40 - Vitamins C and E

I always love hearing the term "free radical" sounds like some hippie throwback from the 60's.
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But in all seriousness, free radicals can damage cells including sperm. Here is an article about how vitamins C and E can help combat the damage:

Can Vitamin C or E Help Male Infertility?
By Alison Palkhivala
WebMD Medical NewsReviewed by Charlotte Grayson Mathis, MD

From the article:

"New research published in Cleveland Clinic's Urology News shows that abnormal amounts of free radicals, naturally occurring but sometimes dangerous molecules that can damage cells, may be responsible for infertility in some men. Vitamins C and E, which are called antioxidants, may have the power to neutralize sperm-busting free radicals...

...Looking at the sperm of men with unexplained infertility, Agarwal has found that levels of a certain type of free radical, which he calls reactive oxygen species, are especially high in these men. While low levels of these free radicals are necessary for the production of normal sperm, levels that are too high have been linked to the destruction of sperm"

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Okay, this is my last post promoting products. I assure you I am not in any way compensated for mentioning these products on my blog. I just happened to be watching the new TV show last week called "The Doctors". It's one of the few shows on during the day that I find worth my time to watch (unfortunately, I can only catch it on a few days) - anyway, they featured a product called "Ovwatch" which uses a new and interesting way to predict ovulation. Read more:

From the article:

Researchers in the late 50s and early 60s noted that numerous salts (chloride, sodium, potassium) in a woman's sweat fluctuated in relation to the menstrual cycle. Chloride levels are low at the start of the menstrual cycle and peak three times during the cycle (see graph below). Using a patented biosensor, OV-Watch detects a baseline chloride ion level for each woman and then accurately predicts ovulation based on the timing of the first peak. The OV-Watch detects the chloride surge 3 days prior to the estrogen surge, 4 days prior to the LH surge and 5 days prior to ovulation, making it an earlier predictor of ovulation than any other chemical surge during the month. For women trying to conceive, knowing the days before ovulation not only lowers the stress level for her and her partner , but it increases her chances of getting pregnant.

Friday, April 24, 2009

$20 Coupon For Conception Kit

I usually don't use my blog to promote a particular company, but I previously did a post on how the "Conception Kit" is a natural alternative to more invasive fertility treatments and you can use it in the privacy of your own home. I was contacted by the company and they would like to offer my readers a $20 off coupon. so just use the code listed (NIAW) if you decide to order it.

Here is a link to my previous post about the conception kit:

Conception Kit

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Communicating With Your Child Even Before Conception

This article caught my eye because it talks about communicating with your child before birth and even before conception. Even though I had very little hope of achieving a pregnancy (i.e. one fallopian tube, a history of fibroids and endmetriosis and approaching my mid-forties) I just couldn't imagine my life without my baby. I would frequently talk to her (yes, out loud) until she was very real. I can't help think that this is one reason she finally did come to me. Here is an article that gives suggestions on how to talk to your "yet to be conceived" baby:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Antidepressents (SSRI's) Hurt Sperm

If the man in your life is taking antidepressants, he may want to talk to his doctor about finding alternatives to SSRI's. This classification of drugs can greatly affect sperm DNA. Read more:

From the article:

study of 35 healthy men given paroxetine -- sold as Paxil or Seroxat by GlaxoSmithKline -- found that, on average, the proportion of sperm cells with fragmented DNA rose from 13.8 percent before treatment to 30.3 percent after just four weeks.

Similar levels of sperm DNA damage have been linked to problems with embryo viability in couples trying to have children.

The research by Peter Schlegel and Cigdem Tanrikut of the Cornell Medical Center in New York was reported in New Scientist magazine and is due to be presented in November at a meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

A copy of the study abstract was made available to Reuters.

"The fertility potential of a substantial proportion of men on paroxetine may be adversely affected by these changes in sperm DNA integrity," the experts concluded.

The study adds to concerns voiced by the same doctors in 2006, after finding that two men had developed low counts of healthy sperm following treatment with two different selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

SSRIs like Paxil/Seroxat and Eli Lilly's Prozac, both of which are now available generically, are the most commonly prescribed class of antidepressant.

Glaxo said it was reviewing the investigators' findings, since the study was not conducted by the company.

"These medicines remain an important option, in addition to counseling and lifestyle changes, for treatment of depression and this study should not be used to cause unnecessary concern for patients," a spokeswoman said.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Importance of Prenatal Thyroid Testing

Pregnancy Over 40 and The Thyroid

Having an underactive thyroid while pregnant can double the chance of miscarriage and can harm fetal brain development.
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 If you are trying to conceive, you should probably have your thyroid testing. Here is an article that tells more:

Prenatal Testing of Thyroid Is Debated

From the article:

Hypothyroidism, which usually arises from underlying autoimmune disease, is the more frequent and worrisome concern. As many as 10 to 20 percent of reproductive-age women test positive for antibodies that attack the thyroid gland and may eventually destroy it. Their risk of miscarriage is doubled.

Three to five out of 1,000 women of childbearing age suffer from overt hypothyroidism, in which thyroid hormone, or T4, is low and T.S.H. is abnormally high. But the most common thyroid dysfunction is subclinical hypothyroidism, in which T4 is normal but T.S.H. is slightly elevated. That condition affects 2 to 3 percent of women but often goes undiagnosed when it causes no obvious symptoms.

Hypothyroidism may harm fetal brain development. Ten years ago, researchers in Maine analyzed blood samples from 25,216 pregnant women and identified 62 with hypothyroidism. Their children, by then 7 to 9 years old, were given intelligence tests. Nineteen percent of the children born to women with an untreated underactive thyroid had an I.Q. of 85 or lower, compared with 5 percent of those whose mothers had a healthy thyroid. “At about 85 or below, that’s where you begin to have trouble in school and in life in general,” said Dr. James E. Haddow, a pediatrician at Brown University who was an author of the study. But if mothers had their hypothyroidism treated, their children’s intelligence was not impaired.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fertility and Infections - Good Resource

I found a great free resource on how infections can affect fertility. Below is a link to a pdf which is actually an entire book on the subject. The book starts out with some basics about infertility and then expands on the infectious disease process. It also gives some actual case studies. Read more:

Fertile vs. Infertile
How Infections Affect Your Fertility and Your Baby's Health
Dr. Attilia Toth (

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Egg Stem Cells - The future for infertility treatment?

As you probably know, I'm all for natural methods of enhancing fertililty. But this article caught my eye. It's possible that the future may hold a less invasive method of helping women with ovarian failure. Read more:

Egg stem cells could revolutionise fertility treatment (

From the article:

If these findings are confirmed, it could revolutionise female reproduction – opening the door for women to put off child-rearing almost indefinitely, and providing a new source of eggs for women who have been rendered infertile.

To isolate the mouse ovarian stem cells – dubbed female germline stem cells (FGSCs) – Ji Wu and his colleagues at Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China first looked for cells producing an egg-related protein called MVH in the ovaries of adult and five-day-old female mice. They then identified rapidly dividing cells and grew them in culture, where they continued to proliferate.

These FGSCs were injected into the ovaries of mice that had previously been sterilised by chemotherapy. Soon after, new eggs formed in the ovaries and the mice subsequently became pregnant and gave birth to healthy offspring. To confirm that the offspring really did come from the implanted eggs, Wu had inserted a gene encoding a fluorescent protein into the stem cells, which some of the offspring were also found to be carrying.

'Ultimate test'
"By producing live young, these cells have passed the ultimate test to prove their germline credentials," says Evelyn Telfer of the University of Edinburgh, UK. "It's very, very exciting."

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