SMOKING AND INFERTILITY
Research has shown that cigarette smoking may
not only increase the rate of miscarriage, but may also impede
conception. According to the American Society of Reproductive
Medicine (ASRM), cigarette smoking has an adverse effect on
the ovaries. As reported in ASRM's Fact Sheet on Smoking (8/2001),
"components in cigarette smoke such as nicotine and the
heavy metal cadmium have been shown to interfere with the
ability of cells in the ovary to make estrogen, and to cause
a woman's eggs to be more prone to genetic abnormalities."
Smoking may also hasten the depletion of eggs and contribute
to earlier menopause.
ASRM estimates that smoking is responsible for up to 13% of female
infertility according to a study from Great Britain reported to
the American Lung Association. ASRM also reports that "in
couples undergoing IVF, female smoking has been associated with
a decreased number of eggs available for fertilization, decreased
pregnancy and delivery rates, and markedly increased miscarriage
Chances for pregnancy success may improve if the patient stops
smoking prior to treatment. Many of the relaxation techniques
described on the Fertility: The Mind/Body Connection website may
also be helpful to patients as they quit smoking.
For further information log onto the patient education pages
or go to www.lungusa.org.