Male Infertility refers to a man’s inability to cause pregnancy in a fertile female partner. A man’s fertility generally depends on the quantity and quality of the sperm. If the number of sperms a man ejaculates is less or if the quality of sperms is poor, it will be difficult and sometimes impossible, for him to cause a pregnancy.
Infertility is a widespread problem. For about one couple in five infertile couples the problem lies only because of the male partner. It is estimated that one in 20 men have some or the other kind of fertility problem with low numbers of sperm in the ejaculate. However, only about one in every 100 men has no traces sperm in his ejaculate.
Male infertility is usually caused due to the problems that affect either the sperm production or the sperm transport. Only through medical testing, the doctor will be able to find the cause of the problem.
About two-thirds of infertile men have a problem with producing the sperm in the testes. Either low numbers of sperm are made or the sperm that are made do not function properly.
Sperm transportation problems are found in about one in every five infertile men, including men who have undergone a vasectomy but now wish to have more children. Blockages in the tubes leading sperm away from the testes towards the penis can cause a complete lack of sperm in the ejaculated semen.
Other less common causes of infertility include: sexual problems that affect whether semen is able to enter the woman’s vagina for fertilisation to take place; low levels of hormones made in the pituitary gland that act on the testes and sperm antibodies. In most men, the sperm antibodies will not affect the chance of a pregnancy but in some men sperm antibodies reduce fertility.
- Avoid smoking as it alters sperm DNA.
- Avoid heavy drugs and alcohol intake.
- Avoiding excessive heat to the testes.
- Wearing a jockstrap to protect the testicles in any sports.
Treatments will vary according to the underlying disease and the degree of the impairment of the male fertility. Pre-testicular conditions can often be addressed by medical means or interventions. Testicular-based male infertility tends resists medication. Usual approaches include using the sperm for intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), or IVF with intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Obstructive causes of post-testicular infertility can be overcome with either surgery or IVF-ICSI. Ejaculatory factors may be treatable by medication, or by IUI therapy or IVF.
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