Helping people become parents
EMD Serono is the Canadian leader in the treatment of infertility. We have developed innovative products to help infertile couples realize their dream of having a child. EMD Serono, Canada, offers a full portfolio of recombinant products for every stage of the treatment cycle.
More about Fertility
As the world leader in the treatment of infertility, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, has developed a comprehensive range of treatments designed to aid the estimated 1 in 10 couples of childbearing age who seek medical help for infertility.
Infertility is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the inability of a couple to achieve conception or bring a pregnancy to term after a year or more of regular, unprotected sexual intercourse. It is estimated that over 70 million couples in the world are infertile.
Although there is a lack of strictly defined explanations for the causes of infertility generally accepted categories include male factor problems (27%), ovulatory problems (27%), tubal problems (26%) and endometriosis (14%). When a comprehensive infertility screen does not reveal a cause, the term “unexplained infertility” is used.
The fertility process at a glance
Among couples of proven normal fertility, the highest rate of conception per monthly cycle is initially 1 in 3. However, this rate declines to 1 in 20 after six months of trying.
In order to achieve pregnancy, a normal egg and a normal spermatazoa need to meet and combine to produce an embryo, which then develops in the uterus with appropriate hormonal support.
The menstrual cycle is the process by which an egg (oocyte) matures and is released from the ovaries every month in preparation for fertilization. It is controlled by an elaborate system involving the gonadotropins FSH and LH as well as ovarian hormones, and consists of 2 phases:
- Follicular phase: usually 14 days leading up to ovulation (release of the egg)
- Luteal phase: after ovulation has taken place
Hormones secreted by the pituitary gland regulate the development and hormone-secreting functions of the ovaries and testes. They support the production of sperm in the male and the development and maturation of eggs in the female.
3 gonadotropins are essential to reproduction:
- Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)
- Luteinizing hormone (LH)
- Human Chorionic gonadotropin (HCG)
The secretion of FSH and LH by the pituitary gland is controlled by another hormone – gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), produced by the hypothalamus.
HCG is primarily produced by the placenta following successful implantation, and plays a role in maintaining pregnancy.
EMD Serono, Canada, is committed to raising awareness of infertility and its treatment, and to supporting couples with fertility concerns. Fertility therapy is now highly successful, with pregnancy rates obtained comparable to natural fertility.