Coenzyme Q10, commonly known as CoQ10, is a naturally occurring substance in the human body. It plays a pivotal role in the body's energy production cycle and is a powerful antioxidant against free radicals that can cause cell damage. The liver, heart, pancreas, and kidneys have the highest levels. In the U.S., companies market it as a dietary supplement, but studies show it may improve a woman's ovarian response to assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatments.
The data suggests CoQ10 supplements can benefit men and women facing infertility, but what about side effects? Is CoQ10 safe?
Safety and Side Effects
Even at high doses, most people tolerate CoQ10 supplements without side effects. However, that doesn't mean no adverse reactions are associated with taking CoQ10. The following side effects have been reported by those taking CoQ0:
• stomach pain
• sensitivity to light
• skin rash
Some medication types may not work correctly when taken in conjunction with CoQ10. These medications include, but are not limited to, the following:
• blood-thinners, such as warfarin
• some types of chemotherapy
As with any medication, consult your healthcare provider before taking CoQ10 with your current medications.
Benefits of CoQ10 Supplements
Based on studies of the effects of CoQ10 supplementation, the evidence suggests CoQ10 is a safe, well-tolerated antioxidant capable of improving fertility in both men and women.
• A study published in the Journal of Urology (Aug. 2012) found CoQ10 supplementation significantly improved sperm motility, sperm density, and sperm morphology in men.
• A study published in the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics (October 2020) found women taking CoQ10 supplements showed increased pregnancy rates compared to those taking a placebo or no supplementation.
• A study by the Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology team found that CoQ10 administration enhances ovarian response to stimulation and improves oocyte and embryo quality.
How Can CoQ10 Help You?
CoQ10 is available as a dietary supplement for promoting overall well-being and health. Extensive studies have also focused on determining its potential for improving fertility in men and women by increasing the quality of sperm and eggs produced.
CoQ10 and Female Fertility
As women age, their fertility decreases because of a decline in the quality and number of available eggs. The naturally produced CoQ10 in the body slows, reducing the protection from oxidative damage to her eggs. Supplementing with CoQ10 may improve egg quality parameters or quantity; however, the literature is inconsistent on this outcome/impact.
CoQ10 and Male Fertility
Studies have determined that dietary supplementation with antioxidants such as CoQ10 can benefit sperm parameters, including improved sperm count and motility.
CoQ10 and Its Role in Your Fertility Journey
CoQ10 is a non-pharmaceutical, inexpensive, and safe dietary supplement that may enhance infertility treatments in women of reproductive age undergoing assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatments. CoQ10 can help improve the quality, quantity, and motility of sperm in men affected by infertility.
Are you considering adding CoQ10 to your efforts to combat infertility? Talk to the Institute for Human Reproduction specialists for help in fulfilling your dreams for a family.