Male fertility in turn is a complex process. It is now clear by all modern studies that infertility is not an exclusively female problem. Approximately for 40-50% of infertile couples the problem is due to the male factor with the most common cause of infertility, the inability of the body to produce sufficient numbers of healthy sperm.
The most common factors for male infertility are:
This category includes all those health problems or medical treatments and medications that have caused a problem on male fertility.
Problem or inability to ejaculate:Palindrome ejaculation is one of the key problems. During this phenomenon, rather than sperm exiting from the top of the penis, it enters the bladder and is destroyed. Various health issues may be responsible for this problem (diabetes, medication, surgery) and in some more serious conditions, such as injury to the spinal cord, etc. zero ejaculation may be caused, even if sperm is produced normally.
Deficiency of sperminal porePores are the tubes that carry the sperm and the obstacle can be created in the epididymis, in one (1) and/or both (2) pores or in part of the testicle. Cause of the problem may be an illness or injury.
Cryptorchism (undescended testicles):
A condition in which the boys during their fetal life one and / or both testicles have failed to descend from the abdomen into the scrotum. Men with this condition are less fertile.
Tumors:Benign or malignant (cancer) tumors can affect male sexual organs and affect the glands that produce the hormones necessary for reproduction. If dealt with radiation or chemotherapy, male fertility is even more challenged.
Hormonal disorders:If a hormonal system such as the hypothalamus, pituitary, adrenal or thyroid gland, exhibit an abnormal function then infertility may occur. Typical and most common disorders are male hypogonadism (low testosterone) and hypothyroidism.
Infections:This category includes infections such as sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s), prostate inflammation (prostatitis), testicle inflammation, etc. that might affect good health and sperm production. In severe cases ulcers can even be created that prevent sperm passage.
This is the most commonly occurring condition. At least three (3) out of ten (10) men with fertility problems suffer from it. It is a edema of veins which lead to the testicles, thus increasing their temperature. The substantial damage therefore is that fewer sperm with lower motility is produced.
Chromosomal deficiency:The syndromes of this type cause impaired development of male reproductive organs thus leading to infertility. According to statistics, the Kleinefelter syndrome is most frequent. In this syndrome a man is born with two (2) X chromosomes instead of one (1) X and one (1) Y, which is the normal.
Problems during intercourse:The main factor in this category is the erectile function and whether it is achieved or maintained to successfully complete intercourse. Another important factor is the premature ejaculation, where the man ejaculates during orgasm without penetration of the vagina. Anatomical abnormalities of the penis and various psychological causes fall into this category.
Medication:Many therapies and certain medications can disrupt sperm production and thus reduce the fertility of the man. The use of anabolic steroids and chemotherapy are two examples.
Overexposure to certain environmental factors can impair the proper functioning and sperm production. Industrial chemicals such as pesticides, herbicides even dyeing materials can reduce the sperm-count. Another category which is considered responsible for infertility is heavy metals.
Exposure to high levels of radiation has been shown to reduce sperm production. Although studies suggest that the production levels are restored there is always the possibility of permanent damage after overexposure. Finally, the overheating of the testicles is a phenomenon which increases with the passage of time. Sedentary lifestyle, hot baths, general increase in global temperature, 'new' tighter clothing etc. increase the temperature of the scrotum to result in temporarily reducing sperm-count.
HEALTH & LIFESTYLE
The modern way of life and the changes in our habits can affect our fertility without our knowledge. The extensive use of computers in our professional life, combined with the intense work stress, is the first and most important factor in this category. Stress can interact with specific hormones necessary in sperm production. Smoking and alcohol consumption immediately follow on the list. Alcohol reduces testosterone levels and sperm production. Cigarette smoking is harmful to the concentration of sperm, always compared to men who do not smoke. At this point it should be noted that studies have shown smaller effect on passive smokers! Last but not least is our body weight. Hormonal changes caused by obesity have an effect on male fertility. The greatest rates of obesity have been noted nowadays and the number of men with obesity is constantly growing.
PROCESS AND SPERM TESTS
The tests that must be carried out by a man to check his infertility are semen analysis and sperm culture. The sample after masturbation is concentrated and placed in a sterile container or in a specially designed area at our center or off center on the condition that it is brought to the laboratory within 20 to 25 minutes.
Semen analysis (Spermodiagram)
The semen analysis is the first and perhaps the most important test of male fertility assessment. When examining, quantitative characteristics of sperm are checked, such as the total sperm count (over 20 mil.), and semen volume (quantity in ml). Qualitative features such as sperm morphology (irregularities in shape) and sperm mobility, are also measured.
The main results of the test are as follows:
- Aspermia: The absence of material after ejaculation.
- Azoospermia: The absence of sperm in the semen sample.
- Kryptoazoospermia: The presence of some sperm only after centrifugation of the sample.
- Hypospermia: Little semen volume.
- Oligospermia: The small number sperm
- Asthenospermia: Decreased mobility
- Teratozoospermia: Increased presence of sperm with abnormal form
- Nekrospermia: Presence only of dead sperm in the sample.
Sperm cultivation is a test done in the laboratory with the aim to identify potential pathogenic microorganisms that can cause infection in the genitourinary system. During sperm cultivation, the presence of common pathogens (aerobic and anaerobic) is checked, as well as the presence of other microbes, such as mycoplasma and ureaplasma. Finally, it is almost always recommended and done, to check and detect chlamidia (sexualy transmitted disease, STD). If a pathogen is found, a list of susceptibility to antibiotic substances to which the microorganism is sensitive, follows.