Infertility: Problems With Ovulation

Infertility: Problems With Ovulation

Topic Overview

It can be difficult and complicated to find out the cause of ovulation problems. Possible causes may include:

  • Hormonal imbalances. Most women with ovulation problems have hormonal imbalances. An example of a condition that causes a hormone imbalance is polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) . 1 Other ovulation problems can originate in the ovaries , or in the pituitary gland and hypothalamus , which produce hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle . These hormones are vital to normal ovulation.
  • Structural problems. Abnormalities in the structure of the ovaries (such as ovarian cysts ) or structural problems in other reproductive organs can cause changes in a woman's ovulation schedule.
  • General medical problems. Medical problems that affect the metabolism (such as thyroid problems), serious illness, emotional stress, overweight and low weight, or excessive exercise can affect a woman's ovulation schedule.
  • Cancer treatment. Exposure to certain kinds of chemotherapy or radiation can damage the egg supply in the ovaries.

Related Information

References

Citations

  1. Fritz MA, Speroff L (2011). Induction of ovulation. In Clinical Gynecologic Endocrinology and Infertility, 8th ed., pp. 1293–1330. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerSarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerFemi Olatunbosun, MB, FRCSC - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Last RevisedDecember 7, 2011

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