Traditionally, fertility issues have been thought as specific to only women, but research has shown that one in three instances of infertility comes solely from the man. Male infertility in combination with female infertility leads to about half of all fertility issues.
Male infertility can be hard for many people to accept as it goes against the tenet that one of the main functions of life is reproduction. While diagnosing fertility issues in men can be challenging, treatments exist to help solve most male infertility.
The first thing all men must do when trying to figure out the source of fertility issues is to have a semen analysis. Even if you do not think that your sperm is the problem, conducting a semen analysis will help narrow down the possible causes of infertility. A semen analysis will help detect low or absent sperm counts. Also, just because you produce sperm does not mean that sperm has adequate movement (motility) or appearance (morphology).
A physical examination may also be conducted to determine if there are any physical issues with the testicles, such as a varicocele. Physical examinations also give clues to any hormonal problems that may be present. Hormone evaluations show the level of testosterone and indicate if medication is needed to help regulate levels. Genetic testing may also be done to evaluate the cause of low or absent sperm production.
In some cases when there is no sperm present in the semen, a testicular biopsy is needed. A biopsy will show if the testes produce any sperm. If there are sperm in the testes but not in the semen, a blockage may be present. Obstructions that prevent sperm from ejaculating can occasionally be repaired with surgery.
If medications or procedures do not provide adequate levels of sperm, this may be an indication of lifelong male infertility. In these cases, a donor may be used to provide sperm for in vitro fertilization or intrauterine insemination.
It is important to consult a fertility specialist if you have been trying to conceive with no success. Contact The Fertility Center of Las Vegas to schedule a consultation or to attend a free patient education seminar.