Unexplained infertility and genetics
Dear Professor Winston,

I’m a 35 year old female, my husband is also 35, we are both fit and healthy, we have been trying to conceive for 8 years and have had 5 cycles of IVF, the 1st 2 cycles were PGD due to a genetic condition (which later turned out not to be x-linked) I had very poor response to those drugs. I started being treated by a new doctor at our local NHS clinic and have undergone 2 cycles with different drugs that I have had a much better response to. The first time, I had 2 low grade embryos transferred but without success. Then I had another cycle with 2 embryos transferred and became pregnant with twins. Unfortunately, at my 11 week scan the embryos had died, by the size of the measurements, I was told this had happened at 7 weeks and 9 weeks. I’m considering one final cycle. I have been told that there is no reason that can be found for my infertility, neither of us have had anything show up on the tests. I’ve been told that the test for “natural killer cells” and also the treatment is not scientifically proven to work, but…

Is it worth doing it on the slim chance it might work?

Is it possible that mine and my husbands DNA just don’t  mix?

Is there any evidence that there is something else I could be doing about diet or lifestyle that could make a change?


Dear D.,

You tell me you have had no cause found for your infertility.  The first thing must be to ensure you have had comprehensive tests – preferably before treatment rather than, for obvious reasons, after it.  So if you will be good enough to send me a list of the tests you have had and the results, I will spend time to do my best to see if I can offer any advice which may be relevant.

This is better than guessing.  In the meantime, if you have not done so, you may wish to glance at my Essential Fertility Guide which is in paperback and all proceeds go to the Genesis Research Charity.

Best wishes

Robert Winston