The causes of infertility in women can include many of the following:
- Hormonal issues: When hormone disorders are present, problems with ovulation can occur. These can be due to the lack of the necessary synchronized hormonal changes leading to the release of an egg from the ovary.
- Disorders of the thyroid gland: Either too much thyroid hormone or too little thyroid hormone can interfere with the menstrual cycle or cause infertility
- Gland disorders: These hormonal disorders may include polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), or problems with the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, adrenal gland (such as Cushing's syndrome or congenital adrenal hyperplasia)
- Structural issues: Benign growths (such as polyps and fibroids) in the uterus, blocked fallopian tubes, abnormal anatomy of the cervix or uterus, endometriosis, scar tissue
- Fallopian tube damage can include scarring from prior surgery and/or pelvic infections. These include pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) due to chlamydia or gonorrhea. Problems with transportation of the egg(s) can occur due to damaged or blocked fallopian tubes.
- Diminished ovarian reserve, premature menopause or cessation of ovulation (primary ovarian insufficiency); changes in egg quality or quantity can affect fertility
- Additional factors:
- Poor diet that is lacking in nutrients
- Athletic overtraining
- Too much exposure to certain chemicals and toxins (for example, tobacco smoke, alcohol, marijuana, pesticides, radiation, and chemotherapy)
- Certain medications (the effect usually is temporary)
- Sickle cell disease
- Kidney disease
- Celiac disease