What is infertility?
"Infertility" is a term that describes when a couple is unable to conceive a child after a year of having sex without birth control. In women who are older than age 35, infertility may be diagnosed with a shorter timeframe of 6 months of trying to conceive.
The term "infertility" also is used to describe women who are able to get pregnant but who are unable to carry a fetus to term.1 If loss of the pregnancy occurs before 20 weeks of pregnancy, it is called a miscarriage or clinical spontaneous abortion. Losses after 20 weeks are called stillbirths. Multiple losses of pregnancy are called repeated or recurrent miscarriage.
- Practice Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. (2008). Definitions of infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss. Fertility and Sterility, 90(5 Suppl), S60. [top]