Cervical & Uterine Factors (Fibroids)

What is the Cervical Factor?

The cervix is located where the vagina joins the uterus at its narrowest point. Sperms are carried via cervical mucus, which is made by small glands near the cervix. After being ejaculated into the vagina, the sperm must move from the vagina to the uterus through the cervical mucus. Around the time of ovulation, the mucus layer thickens due to the hormone estrogen and thins out to facilitate sperm movement. Products like Clomid, which interfere with estrogen synthesis, can occasionally cause the cervical mucus to thicken and change consistency.

Why does this Cervical Factor happen?

Male infertility, or the cervical factor, occurs when sperms cannot travel through the cervical mucus or when anti-sperm antibodies develop in the vagina. Antibiotics are created as part of the immunological response when the body attempts to defend itself against dangerous pathogens like bacteria and viruses. Initially, the body's immune system recognizes the "invading microbes" and produces antibodies to kill them if they are exposed to them again. When the body perceives sperm as an invasive microorganism, it produces anti-sperm antibodies which disrupt the sperm.

What is the treatment procedure for the Cervical Factor?

IUI is the first course of treatment recommended by fertility professionals for infertility caused by cervical factors. To reduce the risk of multiple births, IUI cycles must be managed by qualified OB/GYNs or fertility specialists. If multiple eggs are growing that can be safely ovulated; the IUI cycle could occasionally be changed to an IVF cycle. IVF is used to implant the appropriate number of embryos into the uterus. Embryos that are in excess can either be donated or preserved for later use.  The IUI process avoids the cervical mucus by inserting the concentrated and properly cleansed sperm into the uterus.

What are Uterine Factors (fibroids)?

Women in their childbearing years frequently develop uterine factors, which are non-cancerous uterine growths. They are also known as myomas or leiomyomas, which neither increase the risk of uterine cancer nor frequently develop into a cancerous growth. Fibroids can range from being so small as to be invisible to the naked eye to being so big as to stretch and enlarge the uterus.

What are the symptoms of Uterine Factors (fibroids)?

The most common symptoms of uterine fibroids include the following:

  • Pelvic pressure or pain
  • Heavy menstrual bleeding
  • Longer menstrual periods 
  • Frequent urination
  • Unusual backache 
  • Constipation
  • Leg pains

What are the causes of Uterine Factors (fibroids)?

  • Genetic changes: Several fibroids have been reported to have gene alterations that differ from those in regular uterine muscle cells.
  • Hormones: The uterine lining is encouraged to develop during each menstrual cycle by the hormones progesterone and estrogen to prepare for pregnancy. It has been found that these two hormones also promote the development of fibroids. The estrogen and progesterone receptors in fibroids are higher than in normal uterine muscle cells. Fibroids shrink after menopause as those two hormone synthesis decreases.

Growth factors: Substances that help the body sustain tissues, such as insulin-like growth factors, may also impact the growth of fibroids.

Extracellular matrix (ECM): In the body, ECM is a glue that holds cells together. Increased ECM is observed in fibroids, which also makes them fibrous.

Who are at risk of developing Uterine Factors (fibroids)?

A few factors influencing fibroid development in women may include:

  • Race: Even though any woman of reproductive age can have fibroids, black women are more likely to have them than women of other racial groups.  Additionally, black women are more likely to have more extensive or more fibroids and more severe symptoms that develop earlier in life.
  • Heredity: A woman has a higher chance of getting fibroids if their earlier generation also had fibroids.

What are the prevention measures to avoid Uterine Factors (fibroids)?

Although researchers are still looking into the causes of fibroids, there is no scientific information on how to prevent them. Uterine fibroids may not be preventable. However, only a tiny percentage of those tumours require treatment which is good news.

1. Can a man have anti-sperm antibodies?

In some cases, like a woman a man may also produce anti-sperm antibodies against his sperm. This usually happens as a result of any previous testicular damage or vasectomy.

2. Is there any possible ways to avoid developing fibroids?

By adopting good lifestyle practises, such as eating fruits and vegetables and keeping a healthy weight, women may be able to reduce their risk of having fibroids.

3. What are the factors that may contribute to developing fibroids?

A few factors like early menstruation, obesity, alcohol abuse, vitamin D deficiency, a heavy diet with red meat but light green items, fruit, dairy, etc., all are known to raise the risk of developing fibroids.

4. Where do the uterine fibroids grow?

Uterine fibroids generally grow in different parts of a woman's uterus.

5. Can cervical factors lead to infertility?

Since the uterine cervix is crucial to the process of natural conception, it also contributes significantly to infertility.

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