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What is the connection between endometriosis and infertility?

The relationship between endometriosis and infertility is not completely understood. The primary cause of infertility resulting from endometriosis appears to be a blockage caused by scarring and adhesions in the tubes. These adhesions can prevent the egg and sperm from meeting or prevent the fertilized egg from moving down the tube normally (resulting in an ectopic pregnancy).

Some researchers feel that endometriosis can cause a luteal phase defect, which results from low levels of the hormone progesterone or a poor build-up of the uterine lining after ovulation. A luteal phase defect makes it difficult for the fertilized egg to implant. Some studies report as high as a 36 percent spontaneous abortion (miscarriage) rate in women with endometriosis versus 15 percent in the normal population. Other areas being studied are the effect of endometriosis on normal ovarian function and the role of prolactin in endometriosis.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.