Male infertility - reproductive system

Male Infertility

Reproduction (or making a baby) is an easy and natural experience for the majority of couples. Nevertheless, for some couples it is really difficult to conceive. A man’s fertility generally depends on the amount and quality of his sperm. If the variety of sperm a man climaxes is low or if the sperm are of a bad quality, it will be hard, and often impossible, for him to cause a pregnancy. Male infertility is diagnosed when, after checking both partners, reproductive issues have actually been discovered in the male.

How Common Is Male Infertility?

Infertility is a widespread problem. For about one in 5 sterile couples the problem lies exclusively in the male partner. It is estimated that a person in 20 men has some kind of fertility issue with low numbers of sperm in his ejaculate. Nevertheless, just about one in every 100 men has no sperm in his ejaculate.

Infertility Symptoms in Men

In most cases, there are no apparent signs of infertility. Intercourse, erections and ejaculation will generally occur without trouble. The quantity and appearance of the climaxed semen typically appears normal to the naked eye. Medical tests are had to discover if a man is infertile.


Male infertility is usually caused by issues that affect either sperm production or sperm transport. Through medical screening, the doctor may have the ability to discover the reason for the problem.

About two-thirds of infertile men have a problem with making sperm in the testes. Either low numbers of sperm are made and/or the sperm that are made do not work correctly.

Sperm transport problems are discovered in about one in every five infertile men, consisting of men who have had a birth control and now wish to have more children. Blockages (often described as blockages) in televisions leading sperm away from the testes to the penis can cause a total absence of sperm in the ejaculated semen.

Other less common causes of infertility include: sexual problems that impact whether semen is able to get in the woman’s vaginal area for fertilisation to happen (one in 100 sterile couples); low levels of hormonal agents made in the pituitary gland that act on the testes (one in 100 sterile men); and sperm antibodies (found in one in 16 infertile men). In most men sperm antibodies will not affect the opportunity of a pregnancy but in some men sperm antibodies lower fertility.

Known causes of male infertility

Sperm production problems • Chromosomal or genetic causes • Undescended testes (failure of the testes to descend at birth) • Infections • Torsion (twisting of the testis in scrotum) • Varicocele (varicose veins of the testes) • Medicines and chemicals • Radiation damage • Unknown cause
Blockage of sperm transport • Infections • Prostate-related problems • Absence of vas deferens • Vasectomy
Sexual problems (erection and ejaculation problems) • Retrograde and premature ejaculation • Failure of ejaculation • Erectile dysfunction • Infrequent intercourse • Spinal cord injury • Prostate surgery • Damage to nerves • Some medicines
Hormonal problems • Pituitary tumours • Congenital lack of LH/FSH (pituitary problem from birth) • Anabolic (androgenic) steroid abuse
Sperm antibodies • Vasectomy • Injury or infection in the epididymis • Unknown cause


If a couple has been pursuing a pregnancy without success, they need to go to their local doctor, family preparation center or women’s health center, and have some initial tests. Both partners should be checked, even if one has a child from another relationship. Diagnosis can involve a case history from the man and a physical exam along with a semen analysis to inspect the number, shape and movement of sperm in the ejaculate.

Blood tests might likewise be done to examine the levels of hormones that manage sperm production. Genetic examinations and testicular biopsies are often done.

Male Infertility Treatment

One in eight infertile men has a treatable condition, and after treatment, couples can conceive naturally. In many cases, the doctor will recommend that the couple seek assisted reproductive innovations (ART), such as IVF (in vitro fertilisation). ART do not cure or treat the reason for infertility however they can assist couples attain a pregnancy, even if the man’s sperm count is extremely low.

What is ICSI?

Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is a type of IVF where a single sperm is placed directly into each egg by piercing the outer covering of the egg. ICSI is especially helpful for men with bad sperm production. Sperm are collected from the semen or eliminated carefully from the testis or epididymis. ICSI can achieve pregnancies even when only a few sperm are produced. As for IVF, after fertilisation the resulting embryos are then positioned into the wife’s uterus.

Last modified: March 2, 2018



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