Male Infertility Issues
Male Infertility – Is it Me?Infertility can be a very difficult issue for couples to deal with. Infertility is usually defined as failure to conceive after a full year of having unprotected intercourse.
When trying unsuccessfully to conceive a child the first thing that comes to mind to both members of the couple is “Is it me or you?” This is a very important question, because only by finding the reason why conception is not occurring, can a couple hope to rectify the problem.
So infertility, while difficult to accept or deal with, especially for men when male egos become involved, should never be avoided, but rather confronted. With the help of your medical professional any and all options can be discussed, and the road to parenthood may be made easier than you think.
Causes of Male InfertilityThe are many different causes of male infertility. The good news is that the majority of them are treatable. The most common causes of male infertility are low sperm count or non-mobile or poorly swimming sperm. Other causes of male infertility include:
- Blockage – The Vas Deferens, the vessel that carries sperm from the testicles to the penis may become blocked for any number of reasons, including injury or disease.
- Infectious Diseases – These can be recent infections like STD’s (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) or diseases from childhood such as mumps, that can cause sterility or low sperm count.
- Hormonal Dysfunction – Diseases that effect the level of male hormones can effect a man's fertility
- Chronic Diseases – Certain non-hormonal condition such as diabetes or hypertension can effect male fertility
- Erectile Dysfunction – Or ED, the inability to obtain or maintain an erection can cause male infertility
- Injury – To the penis or testicles can effect fertility in men
- Varicocele – Is a kind of “varicose vein” a swelling that appears on one or both testicles, which impairs sperm production. Varicoceles account for almost 40% of the causes of male infertility
DiagnosticsThe only way to test for the cause of male infertility to is to collect semen for evaluation. Now as embarrassing as this may sound guys, it is necessary – and lets be honest it isn’t anything you have not done before.
Your semen sample provides valuable other information rather then just a sperm count. Multiple characteristics are studied such as ejaculate volume, motility, and ability to swim forward.
On a first visit to a specialist on male infertility the doctor will also take a complete medical history and ask several lifestyle questions.
Treatments for Male InfertilityThe treatment for male infertility obviously depends on the root cause of the situation. Fortunately, once the reason for the symptom is properly diagnosed by a medical professional such as urologist, often there is help available.
For example if a Varicocele is detected and found to be the problem, there are treatment options to be discussed. If absence of or very low sperm in the semen is discovered to be the culprit, here too your doctor will be able to discuss treatment options with you. In the event of hormonal problems HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) may be an option.
Finally, if it is indeed determined that the male is solely responsible for the couples inability to conceive, and if you cannot be treated to return your body to natural fertility, there are still options of Assisted Reproductive Techniques (ART).
As long as your body can produce viable sperm, and your doctor can obtain them, your sperm can still be used to impregnate your partner using IVF, (In Vitro Fertilization) or any number of other “Artificial Insemination” procedures currently available.