British scientists have invented a breakthrough new device to help couples who have been experiencing infertility problems to conceive naturally. Remarkably, the device is tiny, about the size of a small coin!
University of Southampton fertility specialists developed this small implant to track the pH, oxygen and temperature in the womb.
The device monitors a “healthy womb environment” and it compares the readings of a healthy womb of women who can conceive to those who cannot.
NHS data shows that about 1 out of every seven couples in the UK have problems conceiving, which mean approximately 3.5 million people.
Fertility problems affect women and men and are a result of various factors, but in about 25% of the cases, doctors are not able to pinpoint a specific cause.
Fertility tests are time-consuming and the results might not be readily available for some couples. The researchers are seeking to understand exactly what goes into having a healthy womb environment and to find out the conditions inside the womb is as easy as taking your blood pressure.
This new device is inserted similar to a contraceptive coil and was made to stay in for as long as one week.
Data is sent wirelessly once the device is inserted into the womb and a data chip receives the info, which is located in specially designed underwear worn by the woman.
Following the study period, the doctors remove the device and the data collected is then analysed.
Scientists eagerly look forward to the potential positive impact that the device might have on the NHS as well as future patients. Doctors now have the ability to identify fertility problems much quicker and to minimize the stress fertility treatment has on patients. There is also great potential for developing new fertility treatments and therapies.
Couples who have problems conceiving naturally usually go the in vitro fertilisation route, where success is limited. If done privately, it could cost over £5,000 for just one treatment.
The trial will consist of women who had fertility problems or miscarriages and women who don’t have fertility problems.
The fertility clinic at the university will conduct tests to verify the safety and effectiveness of the treatment on 30 women in the beginning.