News & Resources

What does being Overweight/ Obese have to do with Reproduction?

December 18, 2015
By Carolina Sueldo, M.D.

In the United States, almost 2/3 of women and 3/4 of men are overweight or obese. Obesity increases the risks of several medical conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, cardiovascular disease (CVD), sleep apnea, and respiratory problems, ultimately elevating the rate of all-cause mortality. In addition, obesity has several adverse effects on reproduction:

Menstrual Cycle Irregularities (As well as a lower chance of conception within 1 year of stopping contraception compared to normal weight women)

Ovulatory Dysfunction (BMI >27 women have 3 fold increased risk of anovulation)

Altered Endometrial Function

Obesity and Male Infertility (Not all obese men have infertility, but those who do have decreased semen quality, impaired erectile dysfunction, and elevated scrotal temperatures.)

Altered Ovarian Responsiveness and Oocyte Quality (Higher doses of fertility medications required)

Increased Risk of Miscarriage (Well established increased risk for miscarriage in obese women)

Maternal-Fetal Environment (Strong association with pregnancy complications such as: diabetes of pregnancy, hypertension of pregnancy, preterm delivery, stillbirth, and cesarean section. Infants are at increased risk as well, such as developmental defects and early neonatal death.)

Categories of adult obesity are based upon body mass index (BMI). Follow the link to calculate your BMI.


BMI (kg/m2)


Less than 18.5


18.5 – 24.9


25.0 – 29.9

Obesity, Grade I

30.0 – 34.9

Obesity, Grade II

35.0 – 39.9

Obesity, Grade III


Always remember to talk to your IVF FLORIDA Doctor about any questions or concerns you may have, and for more information online, check out ASRM’s website for patients:

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