PCOS, Diabetes and Infertility
Posted: Jun 19, 2015
Diabetes, often referred to by doctors as diabetes mellitus, describes a group of metabolic diseases in which the person has high blood glucose (blood sugar), either because insulin production is inadequate, or because the body's cells do not respond properly to insulin, or both. Patients with high blood sugar will typically experience polyuria (frequent urination), they will become increasingly thirsty (polydipsia) and hungry (polyphagia).
Diabetes continues to be a major menace that keeps the medical community on tenterhooks. This is one ailment that affects multiple organs of human body including the kidneys, eyes and heart. Diabetes also wrecks havoc with essential processes like digestion, nervous system functioning and makes life pathetic for the victims. This ailment affects women and men from literally all age groups and people from nearly all ethnicities fall prey to the menace. Sadly, diabetes does not spare your sexual prowess either. Both men and women can face fertility problems after becoming diabetic.
People can often have diabetes and be completely unaware. The main reason for this is that the symptoms, when seen on their own, seem harmless. However, the earlier diabetes is diagnosed the greater the chances are that serious complications, which can result from having diabetes, can be avoided. Diabetes is a long-term condition that causes high blood sugar levels.
There are 3 types of diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes - the body does not produce insulin. Approximately 10% of all diabetes cases are type 1.
Type 2 Diabetes - the body does not produce enough insulin for proper function. Approximately 90% of all cases of diabetes
worldwide are of this type.
Gestational Diabetes - this type affects females during pregnancy. It occurs when pregnant women without a previous history of diabetes develop a high blood sugar level.
Talk with infertility and fertility experts about the types of diabetes, its implications on infertility and the ways to prevent diabetes at http://www.blossomivfindia.com/meet-the-team
All types of diabetes are treatable. Diabetes type 1 lasts a lifetime, there is no known cure. Type 2 usually lasts a lifetime; however, some people have managed to get rid of their symptoms without medication, through a combination of exercise, diet and body weight control. The majority of gestational diabetes patients can control their diabetes with exercise and diet. Between 10 to 20% of them will need to take some kind of blood-glucose-controlling medications. Gestational diabetes increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes after the pregnancy. Undiagnosed or uncontrolled gestational diabetes can raise the risk of complications during childbirth like
The baby may be bigger than he/she should be.
Premature birth which can lead to complications such as newborn jaundice or respiratory distress syndrome
Your baby having health problems shortly after birth that require hospital care – such as low blood sugar
Miscarriage – the loss of a pregnancy during the first 23 weeks
Stillbirth – the death of your baby around the time of the birth
Diabetes and Fertility
Infertility, the inability to become pregnant within 12 months of trying to conceive, affects about 10% of the population. There are no barriers to infertility: It affects all socioeconomic levels, racial, ethnic and religious groups. The good news is that in the majority of cases, there is a specific medical cause for infertility that can be resolved. In fact, only about 10% of infertility cases go unexplained. In most instances, simple lifestyle changes like weight loss through proper exercise and nutrition can help reverse the affects of infertility. However, diseases like diabetes can cause extra complications for both women and men when it comes to fertility.
If you have been trying with no luck to get pregnant and have not been able to find a reason for your infertility, it may be time to have a simple blood test to determine if your glucose levels are too high. More and more infertility specialists are looking toward this health issue as a main cause of some otherwise unexplained infertility cases they see.
When it comes to diabetes and infertility the answer is clear: there is a connection.
Diabetes in women:
In many cases among women, diabetes alone does not keep them from getting pregnant, but it often at times keeps them from staying pregnant. Fertility doctors say that a woman with higher than normal glucose levels does get pregnant month after month. Unfortunately her diabetes status prevents that embryo from implanting in the uterus, causing a miscarriage before she ever realizes she is pregnant. In this case, the diabetes isn’t preventing conception, but is preventing an ongoing pregnancy. High glucose levels are reported to increase a woman’s chances of miscarriage by 30-60% according to the statistics. Even when implantation does occur, there are other risks considering, including:
- An increased risk of birth defects due to damage caused to embryonic cells from the high levels of glucose in the blood
- A larger baby resulting in a c-section, which increases a mother’s chances of infection
- An increased risk of gestational diabetes in the mother, which can cause other health concerns for both mother and baby
When Glucose Levels are too high in females in addition to keeping an embryo from implanting, glucose levels that is too high can also affect hormone levels throughout the body including the all-important estrogens, progesterone and testosterone levels needed for a pregnancy to occur. That is why glucose control is so vital to your fertility.
When it comes to type 1 diabetes and pregnancy, this is the most dangerous type of diabetes to have for both mother and child. Type 2 diabetes can be controlled and side effects limited, making a pregnancy safer.
Controlling Your Diabetes
When it comes to controlling their diabetes in order to attain a healthy pregnancy, most doctors urge women to plan ahead for a pregnancy by doing the following:
Get their weight to a normal level (the more obese you are, the harder it will be to control your glucose levels)
Get your A1C levels below 6.5 before attempting to get pregnant
Controlling your daily sugar levels for 3-6 months (the longer the better) to give your body the chance to prepare for a pregnancy
Diabetes in Men:
Men are slightly more likely than women to develop diabetes. Men too can experience infertility issues due to high glucose levels. For some retrograde ejaculation, where semen backs up into the bladder, making it impossible to get to the woman’s reproductive organs, becomes a problem, as does erectile dysfunction caused by both the diabetes itself as well as medications which may be used to control it. Still, there is one, more dangerous reproductive side effect to diabetes in men- DNA damage. Diabetes can and does cause serious DNA damage to sperm which can inhibit a pregnancy, live birth and even healthy, normal fetus. What does all this mean? Simply put, a diabetic man who does not control his glucose levels has less of a chance of impregnating his partner and when he does the risk of miscarriage and deformities are much higher.
Should Diabetic Partners Try and Conceive At All?
Both diabetic partners or and either of them having diabetes always has a question whether it is even safe for them to try and get pregnant at all. While it is important to understand the risks involved in high glucose levels and fertility, it is also important to understand that simply controlling your glucose levels, and getting (and keeping them) at a more normal level will reduce these risks and offer the opportunity for a safe pregnancy resulting in a healthy baby. The key to success, of course, is working with your endocrinologist and obstetrician to ensure that your glucose levels remain stable months before trying to conceive as well as during a pregnancy. With a good plan and dedication to eating right and staying healthy, your chances of giving birth are very high, despite a diabetes diagnosis.
Get the detailed knowledge about infertility, its treatment options and causes of infertility at http://www.blossomivfindia.com/sitemap
Infertility specialists encourage their patients with Type 2 diabetes to focus their efforts on eating healthy, exercising, losing weight and closely monitoring blood sugar levels. Taking vitamin supplements is also encouraged. If those efforts alone don't lead to a healthy pregnancy, then medications may be introduced to improve fertility. It can be a challenge to make the lifestyle changes necessary to deal with Type 2 diabetes. The good news is that those efforts are, quite often, rewarded.
Research has shown a strong correlation between PCOS and Type 2 diabetes. Both PCOS and Type 2 diabetes are characterized by unhealthy levels of blood glucose and a resistance to insulin. A variety of medications can be prescribed to help lessen or reverse the effects of PCOS. As with Type 2 diabetes, a healthy lifestyle can also go a long way toward reducing or eliminating PCOS. The key is to bring blood sugar levels into a normal and stable range while combating insulin resistance.
Diabetes doesn't preclude men and women from reproducing. It does, however, require professional guidance, meticulous maintenance of health, and monitoring of blood sugar and hormonal levels. With proper care and attention, the vast majority of diabetics can have healthy offspring.
To help explain diabetes complications in relation to female infertility and male infertility, Specialists at Blossom Fertility and IVF Centre are well-versed in obstetrics, gynaecology and reproductive endocrinology. The Blossom Fertility Centre aims to reduce the stress and hassle associated with infertility investigations and treatment, by offering a one-stop diagnostic and treatment service for infertile couples. While coping up with infertility, it is important that all the test and diagnostic treatment options are considered. The team of specialists at Blossom Centre are in favour of the entire test for blood to be done at the beginning of any diagnosis for the fertility treatment. So if at all any variation in blood sugar levels are there, it is treated initially only. We at Blossom offer to our patient’s clinical excellence, cost-effective treatment options, personalized compassionate care, and exceptional success rate. Our clinic symbolizes excellence, experience, and professionalism in treating all cases of infertility whether it is due to diabetes, PCOS, male infertility, women infertility, hormonal imbalance or egg or sperm production.
You can meet our team of endocrinologist and obstetrician at http://www.blossomivfindia.com/ or you can have their opinion and talk to them at +91 261 2470444
The Blossom Fertility and Ivf Centre aims to reduce the stress and hassle associated with infertility treatment and investigations by offering a one-stop fertility diagnostic and treatment service for infertile couples.