Asthma may cause delay in getting pregnant

By Sheryl Kay • Published: February 18th, 2014
Category: Health in a Heartbeat

As if dealing with an asthma attack was not bad enough, now just having the condition of asthma can cause problems for women trying to get pregnant.

In a new study published in the European Respiratory Journal, investigators evaluated health data supplied to them by more than 15,000 female twins. The group was then broken down into those who had asthma and those who did not. Beyond that, the participants were further categorized based on which women were treating their asthma and which were not. Finally, the researchers also looked at how long it took each of the women to get pregnant.

The findings showed that 1,000 of the women had asthma, and 27 percent of them reported having troubles getting pregnant, while only 21 percent of those women with no asthma also reported an issue. Furthermore those who were treating their condition reported difficulties in conceiving in only 23 percent of the cases, whereas those with untreated asthma reported problems getting pregnant in more than 30 percent of the cases. Older women with asthma also reported more instances of struggling to get pregnant than their younger counterparts.

The researchers say this study was not designed to look into fertility, but rather at the time delays in getting pregnant. The instances of pregnancy, as well as the average number of children had by moms in both groups, did not vary; only the time it took to actually get pregnant. Several possibilities for the delay were mentioned, including women waiting for a time to conceive when they felt good and healthy, which asthma sufferers rarely do when having attacks. The researchers also noted that asthma is related to inflammation, and that the condition may cause semi blockage in the fallopian tubes.

Having a tough time getting pregnant? Be sure to seek the guidance of a fertility specialist and if you do have asthma, keep your other doctors in the loop.