Can Antibiotics Keep You from Getting Pregnant?

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There are any number of medications that can interfere with fertility. Some antidepressants, painkillers, and some medications that are used to treat chronic disorders can, sometimes, prevent you from getting pregnant, or at least contribute to a reduction of your chances of getting pregnant. In some cases, even simple medications like antibiotics may affect your ability to get pregnant one degree or another.

Having said that, there is little clinical evidence to suggest that antibiotics create any dramatic risk of preventing you from getting pregnant. Sometimes, women that are taking antibiotics will report changes in their ovulatory cycle, particularly in their normal pattern of cervical mucus production. However, studies have not been entirely conclusive at this point. It is just as likely that the infection for which the woman is taking the antibiotic may have prevented her from getting pregnant, rather than the antibiotics themselves. More often than not, antibiotics will actually help you get pregnant by combating whatever infection it is that is in your system in the first place.

Antibiotics are not known to affect male fertility either. There are a few antibiotics that can affect sperm production. Sulphasalazine is one of these antibiotics. Sulphasalazine is often used to treat inflammatory bowel disease. In general, when a man has a condition as serious as inflammatory bowel disease, it is important to remember that the illness itself is probably more likely to prevent you from getting pregnant than the antibiotic used to treat the disease.

Some of the most common things that will prevent you from getting pregnant are not related to antibiotics or medications at all. Endometriosis, problems with ovulation, poor egg quality, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), and blocked or damaged fallopian tubes are all many times more likely to prevent you from getting pregnant than antibiotics.

Even if you are trying to conceive, you should not stop taking any medication without consulting with your health care provider. She can usually help you with the most up-to-date information about the effects of specific medications, including antibiotics, on getting pregnant.

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This entry was posted in Getting Pregnant.


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