Male Factor Infertility Explained for Men's Health Week

mens health week male factor infertilityMen’s Health Week is this week. A great time to learn how men are affected by infertility as up to 40% of all infertility is caused by male factor problems.  

 

Here is the information that Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMACT) shares on our website about male factor infertility. There will be more this week about men, health and infertility. ~ Lisa Rosenthal

 

Although infertility research and medical services have traditionally focused on women, fertility issues crop up just as often in men. In fact, it’s estimated that up to 40% of infertile couples are unable to conceive because the man’s sperm production is less than optimal.

The first and most obvious sign of male infertility is the inability for couples to get pregnant. There may be no other symptoms unless the infertility is caused by a hormonal problem, in which case reduced facial and body hair growth or low sex drive may be the tip off.

Male Infertility Information

Male infertility may be due to:

  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Hormone deficiency or surplus
  • Impotence
  • Infections of the prostate, testes or epididymis (tubes that store and carry sperm)
  • Older age
  • Previous chemotherapy
  • Previous scarring due to infection (including sexually transmitted diseases), trauma or surgery
  • Radiation exposure
  • Environmental pollutants
  • Exposure to high heat for prolonged periods
  • Retrograde ejaculation (dry orgasm)
  • Smoking
  • Heavy use of alcohol, marijuana or cocaine
  • Use of certain prescription drugs
  • Poor nutrition
  • Being overweight or too thin

Causes of Male Infertility

Male infertility can also be caused by low sperm count (subfertility), reduced sperm movement (motility), or abnormally-shaped sperm (also known as abnormal sperm morphology).

If indicated, men are referred for evaluation to a urologist who specializes in diagnosing and treating infertile men. This evaluation includes a medical history, physical examination, complete semen analysis and, if appropriate, sperm function tests.

Once we determine the most appropriate course of treatment for each couple, alternatives may include:

  • medical or surgical procedures to increase sperm counts
  • intrauterine inseminations with or without superovulation therapy
  • in vitro fertilization (IVF) with intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) or possibly the use of donated sperm

At Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut, we focus on establishing the correct diagnosis and using advanced treatment techniques to make it possible for many men who are diagnosed with male infertility to become fathers. Contact us for more information.

Topics: Male Infertility, Health

Lisa Rosenthal

Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.

Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.

Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.

Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.

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