Excellent page Hannah! Some fantastic diagrams and the information is clear and to the point. Well done
MALE INFERTILITY: Causes and Treatment

Infertility is defined as the inability to produce offspring. It is equally as common is men as female infertility, though it is often thought not to be. There are several different causes of infertility in men:
  • Azoospermia - Complete absence of sperm
  • Oligospermia - Low sperm count
  • Teratozoospermia - Abnormally shaped sperm
  • Asthenozoospermia - Problems with sperm mobility
    Vasectomy (http://adam.about.com/reports/Vasectomy-series.htm)
    Vasectomy (http://adam.about.com/reports/Vasectomy-series.htm)
  • Necrozoospermia - Completely immobile sperm (sperm may be alive but immobile or dead)
  • Previous vasectomy causing problems with delivery of sperm
  • Retrograde ejaculation - sperm enters bladder instead of leaving through the urethra
  • Problems with erections
  • Age

One of the most common causes of infertility is a condition called varicocele. This is when the
network of blood vessels carrying blood back to the body from the testes become twisted and swollen, causing them to swell and become twisted in a similar way to varicose veins in the legs (more common in the left side than right).


Treatments available for variocele include varicocelectomy which is a surgical procedure. The abnormal vein is tied off so that blood will flow through normal veins around the affected area.

Other treatments include:
  • In the case of infection, antibiotics
  • Surgical correction (for example variococelectomy)
  • Medications/fertility treatment - to improve sperm production and increase sperm count

Varicocele - dilipraja.com
Varicocele - dilipraja.com


FEMALE INFERTILITY: Causes and Treatment


There are several different causes of infertility in women:
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome - http://pennstatehershey.org/healthinfo/graphics/images/en/17209.jpg
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome - http://pennstatehershey.org/healthinfo/graphics/images/en/17209.jpg

  • Infrequent ovulation - This is when the release of eggs from the ovaries are spaced out wider than usual. It also means a woman's periods will be widely spaced or even completely absent. This can be caused by many different factors. As well as some hormone irregularities it can be caused by the woman's lifestyle, for example eating disorders, unusual excessive exercise, rapid weight loss or obesity.
  • Premature ovary failure - When the ovaries stop functioning before the woman reaches natural menopause.
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) - This can cause the woman to have high levels of male hormones resulting in irregular or no periods. It can delay the release of an egg from the ovaries.
  • Scarring in fallopian tubes - This can prevent the egg from travelling down the fallopian tubes into the uterus. Scarring may be caused by a previous ectopic pregnacy, previous surgery or pelvis inflammatory disease. This accounts for around 30% of infertility in women.

There are several ways a women can increase her fertility levels which involve slight lifestyle changes:
  • Moderate excercise - Keeping to regular and moderate exercise can stop periods becoming irregular or absent.
  • Keep a healthy consistent weight - Avoiding extreme weight loss or gain can help keep fertility levels up.
  • Avoiding alcohol, excessive caffeine and smoking - These can all contribute to lowering fertility levels.

IVF treatment - http://www.ivf.net.in/images/ivf.gif
IVF treatment - http://www.ivf.net.in/images/ivf.gif

There are fertility treatments available for infertility problems associated with irregular or absent ovulation. These include:
  • Clomiphene citrate - This stimulates the ovaries to release one or more eggs
  • LH and FSH hormone injections - Otherwise known as ovulation induction, these hormones stimulate the ovaries to release more than one egg at a time.

After these fertility treatments, other treatments can be given to help start pregnancy:
  • In vitro fertilization (IVF) - This procedure involves the egg and sperm being combined in a laboratory, and the embryo then being inserted into the uterus. More than one embryo is used as it does not guarantee pregnancy.
  • Intrauterine Insemination - The sperm is inserted directly into the uterus by a catheter or syringe.

Though all these treatments can increase chances of getting pregnant, they can often lead to the production of twins, triplets or larger multiple pregnancies.



Coronary Heart Disease
Coronary heart disease refers to any desase which causes the restrction or blockage of the coronary artery and the supply of blood to part of the heart's muscular wall. It is the main cause of death in the UK, more common in men than women and people become more at risk as they get older.
The restriction/blockage of blood causes the affected area of the heart to be partially or completely deprived of oxygen. This can cause the death of muscle cells which is called myocardial infarction. Depending on the size of the affected area the person can die instantly or make a satisfactory recovery.
external image 19136_13412_5.jpg
Therr are several potential causes of CHD:
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Lack of regular exercise
  • Being obese or overweight
  • Having a family history of CHD
CHD is usually caused by a build up of fatty deposits on the inside of the arteries, which all of the above contribute towards. This build up of atheroma (fatty deposits) is what causes the coronary artery to become narrower or blocked up which is called atherosclerosis.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Selective arteriography can be used to detect any blockage in the coronary artery. If the blockage is serious then a coronary bypass can be performed. A heart attack may be prevented from happening again by several lifestyle changes, a few of which are:
  • Eating a halthy, balanced diet
  • Stopping smoking
  • Take regular exercise
  • Reducing stress

external image 18020.jpg
Atherosclerosis is a condition where the arteries become hard and blocked by substances such as cholesterol and lipids. It is initally caused by atheromas - plaques of fatty material - developing inside the vessel, on the inner wall. Over time these atheromas grow bigger as hardened cholesteral and lipid molcules build up. As the plaques grow they restrict the blood flow to an organ further and can stop it properly functioning. If one of the plaques ruptures it causes a blood clot to develop which can block the artery completely which may trigger a heart attack or a stroke, depending on the cut off blood flow.
Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is defined as a blood pressure that is consistently 140/90 or higher, although it can also be if just one number is higher eg. 150/60 or 120/110. Hypertension puts strain on the heart and blood vessels which over time may escalate to a heart attack or a stroke. It can also cause heart or kidney disease and is found to be linked to some forms of dementia.
Although there is usually no single cause of high blood pressure, there are a number of contibuting factors:
  • High salt intake
  • Lack of regular exercise
  • Not enough fruit and veg in diet
  • High alcohol intake
  • Begin overweight
  • Having a history in the family
  • Ethnic origin (people of African, Caribbean and South Asian communities are at higher risk from high blood pressure)

High blood pressure can be lowered either by lifestyle changes e.g. lose weight, eat less salt and regular exercise, or by medical treatment.


The Lymphatic System
The lymphatic system is a network of vessels around the body carrying excess tissue fluid (fluid containing dissolved glucose, respiritory gases and useful ions and proteins, essential for cell function) around the body. This fluid filters at high pressure through the capillaries into surrounding tissue and the excess fluid, lymph, is absorbed by lymphatic vessels. It travels through the body and eventually re-enters the bloodstreamthrough the lymphatic ducts.

Absorption of lipids
Each of the villi on the lining of the small intestine contains a lacteal, a tiny lymphatic vessel. The products of fat digestions are absorbed through the epithelial cells of the villi, and droplets of fat are absorbed by the lacteal into the lymphatic system and indirectly enter the bloodstream,