About DHEA for Fertility and Decreased Ovarian Reserve
One of the most difficult infertility issues to treat is decreased ovarian reserve. As a woman ages, there is an inevitable decline in the number and quality of her eggs. Up until recently, there has been very little to recommend to women who have faced infertility due to poor quality eggs.
However, there has been increasing interest recently in a hormone called dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). This hormone is actually produced normally in the body; as a person ages, the amount of this hormone goes down over time.
A recent study looked at the impact of using this hormone on the pregnancy rate of patients who had previously unsuccessful fertility treatments (IVF) due to poor egg quality. In this study, those patients who took DHEA supplementation during the IVF treatment had a substantially higher chance of having a live birth compared with the patients who did not use DHEA supplementation.
It is not exactly clear how this hormone causes improvements in egg quality; however, with the low cost of DHEA and the low chance of side effects seen with its use thus far, it remains an intriguing addition to the treatment of decreased ovarian reserve.