Environmental Public Health Tracking: Fertility and Infertility Data

Reproduction is complex, and many factors affect the parents’ ability to make a baby, carry the baby to term, and deliver the baby without problems. These factors include age, genetics, income/education level, and many others.

Fertility and infertility are one type of birth outcome.  Review the FAQs below for more information about fertility and infertility.

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What are fertility and infertility?

Fertility is the ability to create a child. Infertility means not being able to become pregnant. Both men and women can contribute to infertility. 

What measure does Wisconsin Tracking use for fertility?

Wisconsin Tracking uses the total fertility rate to measure fertility. The total fertility rate is the average number of children a woman is predicted to give birth to during her lifetime, given the age-specific birth rates observed in a given year. The value is given per 1,000 women. For example, the total fertility rate in Wisconsin in 2015 was 1,851 children per 1,000 women. This means that in 2015, the expected number of children each Wisconsin woman would give birth to in her lifetime was just under 2 (1.85 to be exact).

What are the risk factors for infertility?

The cause of infertility can be from the man, woman, or both.  Learn more about risk factors on the CDC's Infertility FAQs page. 

Is infertility preventable?

Infertility is a complex problem. It does not have a single cause because getting pregnant involves a chain of events.  Doctors can answer questions about fertility and conception.  Learn more about infertility on the CDC's Infertility FAQs page. 

What is the relationship between infertility and the environment?

We need more research on how environmental contaminants affect fertility.  Visit the CDC's Infertility and Public Health webpage, which includes information on potential environmental links.

Where can I learn more about fertility and infertility?

Last Revised: December 30, 2019