Managing Subfertility in Pakistan. What is the Difference

  • Shagufta Saeed Sial Professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Benazir Bhutto Hospital, Rawalpindi
Keywords: Shagufta Saeed Sial


Subfertility is a worldwide problem. In a developing country like Pakistan, the management of subfertility faces various challenges which might differ in frequency, intensity and the type faced in the developed world.   The term Subfertility instead of Infertility bears a significant impact on the couple. The use of word ‘infertility’ is like tying the cart before the horse. The patient is labeled infertile even before the doctor interacts with the patient. The word infertility conveys ‘failure’ whereas ‘subfertility’ transmits hope! Therefore, the doctor must use the term subfertility for further communications.
The couple who fails to conceive within one year of unprotected intercourse is considered subfertile. However, on a lighter note, the ‘mother in law definition’ is three months only or even less. In a closely-knit family system like ours, a duration of one year is not acceptable. Therefore, it is essential to acknowledge the needs of the patient whenever she seeks advice irrespective of the duration of subfertility.