News • Blog
Sexual health and LGBT population
Living with HIV
Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)
The production of ova or eggs (also known as oocytes) in the female genital tract requires a complex interaction between the brain and the ovaries (the egg producers). Hormones (LH and FSH) developed and released from the pituitary gland (small gland at the base of the brain) help to co-ordinate the reproductive cycle and female hormones such as progesterone and estrogen. The ova require fertilization by a mature viable spermatozoa for conception to occur. The genital tract is expertly designed to transport these eggs to the normal place of fertilization: the fallopian tubes. When an egg is released each month (approximately mid-cycle) it is quickly captured by one of the two fallopian tubes and gradually eased towards the uterus (where development of the fetus/baby occurs). If sperm are present in the female genital tract, they typically migrate to the upper third of the fallopian tube and penetrate the egg, resulting in fertilization.
Careful!! It is possible for fertilization to occur with a sperm ejaculated into the vagina up to 3 - 4 days prior to ovulation.
Ejaculate of semen from your partner contains millions (if not hundreds of millions) of sperm.
The female reproductive system is designed such that if fertilization does not occur, menstruation does (monthly loss and renewal of the surface of the uterus).