Unexplained infertility: Does it really exist? Does it matter?

Charalambos Siristatidis, Siladitya Bhattacharya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Unexplained infertility (UI) refers to a diagnosis made in couples in whom standard investigations including semen analysis, tests of ovulation and tubal patency are normal. It has been suggested that the term UI is unsustainable, as conditions such as endometriosis, tubal infertility, premature ovarian ageing and immunological infertility tend to be misdiagnosed as UI. In this debate, we present the view that, although scientifically unsatisfying, the diagnosis of UI is sustainable from a clinical and practical perspective. Given our present treatment options, further investigations leading to a more 'accurate' diagnosis is unlikely to change our management in these cases. Scientific curiosity must take second place to a more pragmatic approach, which takes into account the clinical and financial costs of making a more 'accurate' diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2084-2087
Number of pages4
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue number8
Early online date11 Jun 2007
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2007


  • endometriosis
  • fallopian tube diseases
  • female
  • humans
  • infertility
  • male
  • maternal age
  • pregnancy


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