The results of a survey show that, shockingly, nearly 40 percent of active-duty women report fertility problems. This is a significantly higher rate than expected for any demographic, considering that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Survey of Family Growth shows that 1 in 8 couples have trouble conceiving (approximately 13 percent).
“According to the report – Access To Reproductive Health Care: The Experiences of Military Women– 37 percent of active duty women polled said they had chronic problems in conceiving or carrying a baby to term, while 30 percent of female veterans said they experienced infertility while trying to get pregnant.”, as reported by Military.com.
Such a drastic gap between female active duty personnel and the general public (24 percent) has raised concerns that the fertility issues could be service-related. In response, the Department of Defense is sponsoring a study of military women’s health to be undertaken by the RAND Corporation. Results are expected later this year.
As of now the causes of high rates of infertility among active-duty women are unclear, but some military women have come forward with ideas of their own, such as ill-fitting body armor that is designed with the male physique in mind, contaminated water and air in war zones, and harsh cleaning and stripping agents.
Adding Insult to Infertility
According to Business Insider, “many survey respondents say they had to pay out-of-pocket, sometimes up to $30,000, for care.” The military has insisted that it does provide coverage for infertility, but TRICARE – the military’s health care provider – does not cover in-vitro fertilization, perhaps the most common fertility treatment available to women and couples who wish to conceive.
The Bottom Line
Whether someone is active duty military, a reservist, retired, or making a living in a non-military career, the first step remains the same when dealing with infertility: seek the advice of an experienced physician with a proven track record providing fertility treatments.
Fertility treatment options like IVF are more effective and accessible than ever. Simply learning more about the treatments that may be right for you can provide some peace of mind and allow you to focus your energy on preparing for the next step in your fertility journey.
Are you ready to explore your fertility options? Call 612-863-6137or complete our quick, convenient new-patient form to schedule an appointment with one of our proven specialists.