This section is from the book "The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine. Volume 2.", by J. H. Kellogg, M.D.. Also available from Amazon: The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine, Volume 2.
This condition differs from impotence in that the patient is not incapable of the sexual act, but remains childless.
The most common causes are displacements of the uterus, contraction of the uterine canal, leucorrhoea, catarrh of the uterus, menorrhagia, sexual excess, secret vice, absence of the uterus or ovaries. Women who suffer from great losses of blood at the menstrual period, and those who are excessively fat are very apt to be childless, or if they become pregnant are likely to suffer miscarriage. In a much larger proportion of cases of sterility than is generally supposed, the difficulty exists in the husband instead of the wife. The causes of sterility in husbands have been considered elsewhere. It may be mentioned here that Dr. Noeggerrath, an eminent physician of New York City, after a very extensive investigation of the subject, asserts that what he terms "latent gonorrhoea" is a very common cause of sterility. Dr. N. holds that if a man has once suffered with gonorrhoea, even when months or years have elapsed after a cure has apparently taken place, he is still likely, in case he marries, to communicate to his wife a disease which will render her incapable of childbearing, if he is not himself rendered incapable of procreation as a just punishment for his sin and folly.
The various diseases upon which sterility may depend should receive first attention, and all the known causes should be avoided, particularly sexual excess. It may be properly mentioned in this connection that sexual contact just prior to or within a few days after menstruation is much more likely to be successful than at other times.