Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Infertility

1-minute read

Infertility usually refers to when a couple have been unable to conceive after 12 months of unprotected sexual intercourse. Sometimes, more broadly, the word refers to when a woman is unable to carry a pregnancy to term. Infertility affects about 15 in every 100 Australian couples of reproductive age.

There are many causes of infertility.  For about 2 in 5 couples it will be due to a sperm problem; in another 2 in 5 couples, there will be a problem with the woman's reproductive system. Sometimes it will be due to a combination of factors — or there will be no apparent cause.

If you are a woman, your fertility may be affected by:

Adult male fertility may be affected by:

  • problems with the tubes that connect to the testes
  • low sperm production
  • high numbers of abnormal sperm
  • genetic problems
  • problems with the sperm DNA

Follow the links below to find trusted information about infertility.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: May 2018


Back To Top

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

Infertility

Infertility can be a stressful and frustrating experience. Find out more on infertility.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Male infertility - myDr.com.au

Male infertility is a major factor in 30 to 50 per cent of couples having trouble conceiving. Male infertility usually results from low numbers of sperm or poor quality sperm.

Read more on myDr website

Male infertility | Healthy Male

Infertility can be caused by problems that affect sperm production or how the sperm travels. There are medical tests that can help work out the cause.

Read more on Healthy Male - Andrology Australia website

Problems becoming pregnant

If you've been trying unsuccessfully to fall pregnant for a year or more, it's time to see your doctor.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Semen analysis for infertility | Healthy Male

Semen analysis for infertility What is semen analysis? When is semen analysis done? What is checked in a semen analysis? How is semen collected for testing? Do I need a referral from a doctor? What do the results mean? Are other tests done? Resources Resources Fact sheet Semen analysis fact sheet Download PDF SEE ALL RESOURCES

Read more on Healthy Male - Andrology Australia website

Fertility tests

There are a number of tests that are available to determine your fertility.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Five causes of female infertility | Women's Health Queensland Inc

There are many reasons why women experience difficulty in conceiving. we discuss five common causes.

Read more on Women's Health Queensland website

Support around fertility - Cancer treatments

Finding out your treatment might make you infertile can be another massive blow - its normal to feel sad, anxious or angry.

Read more on CanTeen website

Male Fertility - cancers and treatments

On this page youll find general information about how different cancer treatments may impact on your fertility

Read more on CanTeen website

Miscarriage Support | What is Infertility?

Infertility can be a highly emotional journey fraught with uncertainty and an ongoing rollercoaster of hope and disappointment.

Read more on Pink Elephants Support Network website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information and advice

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo