If you are struggling to get pregnant or keep a pregnancy, it is advisable to have your estradiol level tested and the thickness of the endometrium, or uterine lining, measured.
If it is determined that you have a thin uterine lining, most doctors will prime the uterus with oestrogen medications to see if it responds well and thickens. If this does not work, then it means that the blood supply is compromised or the endometrial tissues are damaged.
Inadequate blood supply
Sometimes the blood supply to the uterus is compromised. If the uterus is not receiving enough blood, it may not be able to create a thick enough endometrium every month. Here are some reasons why this happens:
I am talking about little or no movement each day. Women who have desk jobs or sit all day long are more likely to experience compromised blood flow to the uterus.
Usually, the uterus should tilt forward, but in 20 per cent of all women it tilts backward or on one side. If the uterus is not well positioned, it could result in reduced blood supply to the uterus.
These non-cancerous tumours of the uterus may alter the blood flow to the endometrium by pressing on vital circulatory avenues that supply the endometrium with blood. Older uterine fibroids may calcify and become hard over time, thereby compromising blood flow.
Uterine fibroid embolization
This is a surgical procedure aimed at cutting off blood supply to the fibroids in order to starve them, reduce their sizes or eliminate them. It may cut off vital blood supply to many areas of the uterus and damage the uterus, thus causing an even more significant reduction in blood circulation to the uterus.
Uterine arterial constriction
The uterus relies on the uterine artery to bring in fresh blood. High stress levels can stimulate the sympathetic nervous system to cause arterial constriction, reducing blood flow to the uterus. Not only does chronic high stress alter blood flow, but it alters hormone levels in the body and contributes to hormonal imbalance.
Uterine arterial constriction may also occur due to any of the following reasons, which we have discussed previously:
Induced medical abortion
Repeated use of Clomid
Clomid is a medication used to stimulate ovulation. It is one of the first medications suggested by doctors for couples struggling to conceive. In some women, repeated use of the medication has been shown to cause a thin uterine lining.
Clomid tricks the body into acting as though oestrogen levels are low, which stimulates the production of GnRH. While the latter in turn signals the pituitary gland to increase FSH, the anticipated result should be ovulation. Clomid sounds great for stimulating ovulation, but what about the fact that it is anti-oestrogenic?
Repeated use of Clomid, primarily, when used for three cycles in a row, can block the stimulation of oestrogen to thicken the endometrium.
Clomid contains two isomers. Isomers are compounds that contain the same molecular formula, but different structural formulas. Isomers usually have different actions. When a woman discontinues the use of Clomid, one of the isomers leaves the body in a week. The other one remains, acting as an anti-oestrogenic for up to six weeks.
Repeated use of Clomid also causes a build-up of this isomer, which results in a thin uterine lining. This action on oestrogen level in the body can also prevent natural ovulation in future cycles, actually inhibiting conception. It is advisable to give the body a break from Clomid for at least six weeks to eliminate the remaining isomer from the body.
Remember that Clomid may help you get pregnant right away, but it does not solve the root of the fertility problem. Although it is a temporary boost and a band-aid, it cannot address all infertility-related issues.
Long-term use of birth-control pills containing progestin
Long-term use of oral contraceptives containing higher amounts of Progestin has a link to thinning of the uterine lining and uterine atrophy. The longer a woman uses progestin, the increased chance for a weak and thin uterine lining.
…to be continued