From an immunological point of view, pregnancy is a unique set of circumstances because a woman’s body has to ‘withstand something that is foreign to it’. The mother has to carry the embryo and, in order to do so, her immune system needs to accept co-existence with cells that are at least half foreign in origin. Using a […]
Personalising courses of treatment is undoubtedly currently the
most important area of change in the field of medicine. A specific strategy should be designed
depending on each patient’s individual characteristics.
One of the key areas for developing personalised medical healthcare is the use of pharmacogenetics. A patient needs different doses or types of pharmaceutical drugs depending on certain genetic variations. […]
It is common knowledge that a seminogram is one of the basic tests that couples who are having issues getting pregnant. In other words, the male partner’s semen needs to be analysed in order to check certain parameters such as the quality of spermatozoa in ejaculate, their motility, their morphology and so on. The aim is to […]
The risk of contracting HIV during unprotected sexual intercourse is estimated to be between 0.5 and 1%. For serodiscordant couples (one partner is a carrier), trying for a child naturally can entail an elevated risk of transmission. In cases such as these, assisted reproduction techniques are an excellent choice for getting pregnant without the risk […]
Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis(PGD) consists of studying chromosomalabnormalities and genetic abnormalities in the embryo prior to transfer to the mother. Itspurpose is to ensure that children are healthy and to bring thetransmission of a given condition to an end.
Significant progress that has revolutionised this area ofreproductive medicine has been made over the last few years and specificallywith regards to one type […]
The extent of the issue
Obesity is a public health issue both in the general population and in women of childbearing age. The figures are a proof of this and, far from improving, the problem has been getting progressively worse over the last few years.
Maternal obesity in the United States of America was calculated to be 7% in 1980 and had risen up to 24% by 1999. If we take into account both obesity and excess weight, the available data indicates that the figures were 37.1% in 1999 and 40.5% in 2003.
The NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) reveals obesity figures (BMI or body mass index ≥ 30 kg/m2) in women of reproductive age (20 to 39 years of age) of 31.9%.
In other words, one in every three women of a fertile age is obese. […]
Cryptorchidism, from the Greek words kriptos (hidden) and orquis (testicle), is the failure of one or both testes to descend to the scrotum. It is estimated that between 2 and 5% of newborn boys have this abnormality although the figure rises to 30% when premature boys are taken into account. In many cases, the issue resolves itself naturally and, as a result, at one year of age, only 1% of boys have the condition. […]
Turner syndrome is a chromosomal condition caused by partial or total loss of one of the X chromosomes.
All human beings have 23 pairs of chromosomes and this is what is known as the karyotype. It is where all genetic information is stored. In other words, it is what determines our external appearance, our personal physical characteristics, how our organs work, whether or not we will have certain illnesses and so on. There are 22 pairs of numerical chromosomes ranging from 1 to 22 and one pair of sex chromosomes: X and Y. Women have two X chromosomes – one from their father and one from their mother. Men have one X chromosome – from their mother – and one Y chromosome – from their father. If, when a female embryo is generated, incorrect division leading to total or partial loss of the X chromosome takes place, this generates an abnormal karyotype that is characteristic of women with Turner syndrome. The syndrome, by definition, does not occur in males because they only have one X chromosome and cannot live unless this chromosome is present. […]
In vitro fertilisation treatment (IVF) techniques consist of fertilising oocytes with spermatozoa in a laboratory. They are held under conditions that are similar to their natural environment and, a few days later, the best embryo is selected and placed in the woman’s uterus where it remains until it implants. From this point on, monitoring procedures are the same as in any other spontaneous or natural pregnancy. […]