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Fertility Treatment in Other Countries

Many patients who come to my clinic are amazed at how busy I am.  They comment about how many of their friends in other cities are also coping with infertility.  While the US does have a high incidence of infertility, it seems to be even higher in other countries.  Here is a link to an article in the Economist that gives more information about fertility treatment in other developed countries.  They have a very interesting chart about 2/3rds down the page.

In the US, about 1 out of every 100 births is from IVF.  In Belgium and Denmark, it is almost 4 per hundred.  This may be because of the higher overall number of births in America, but they are some pretty eye-opening numbers.  The most recent statistics state there are 6 million people in the US suffering from infertility, so the total number worldwide probably approaches 60 or 80 million.  I can only imagine what the incidence of infertility in China is going to be, because of the significant amount of pollution happening there.

Nonetheless, we are facing a world-wide epidemic of infertility.  FSH levels are rising in younger and younger women.   Sperm counts continue to decrease.  Thankfully, people are starting to realize that environmental factors can affect fertility.  I think we are going to see a drop in bottled water usage and couples that are TTC eating less soy products, as well as more organic food.  Overall health is key for maintaining reproductive health.