Male Infertility

Learn about the causes of male infertility

Fertility problems occur in men as much as in women—in fact, 30 percent of infertility cases can be traced to male infertility. The cause of male infertility may be biological, environmental or unknown, but the nature of the problem must be diagnosed before an effective solution can be found. Discover the sources of male infertility, the risk factors and how it can be prevented to ensure a fertile future.

Male Infertility Causes

Male infertility or low fertility is typically caused by tube blockages or problems with the sperm. Whether these problems stem from genetic disposition, lifestyle choices or complications of infection, they are often treatable. A sexually transmitted infection like chlamydia or gonorrhea can cause the vas deferens or the epididymis to become obstructed with discharge, and varicose veins in the testicles can cause tube blockages. Scar tissue male infertility is typically treated with surgery to repair the damaged tubes or clear away the obstruction, but if an infection is responsible for the damage, antibiotics will get rid of the disease and prevent any future damage.

Male InfertilitySource:

The health of the sperm plays an important role in male fertility—low sperm count and abnormally shaped sperm will hinder conception. A particularly active lifestyle, stress or a smoking habit can be male infertility causes, and often a lifestyle change and fertility drugs will be prescribed to boost sperm production.

Signs of male infertility typically appear when a couple cannot conceive after one year of regular sexual intercourse, although in many cases male infertility combines with female infertility to make conception especially difficult. A doctor-administered male infertility test will begin with a physical examination and discussion of medical and reproductive history, followed by a semen analysis and hormone evaluation to determine the nature of the problem and the degree of infertility.

Solutions to Male Infertility

After an initial consultation with an urologist, a course of action that includes medication or surgery will be prescribed. The compound L-carnitine, normally produced by the body to metabolize fat, has been shown to increase sperm quality fairly significantly in some men. The relationship between L-caritine and male infertility is based on energy and growth, while other drugs target hormonal processes to increase sperm quality. Limited research has been conducted on the connection between Clomid and male infertility, but some studies have shown that Clomid can stimulate the pituitary gland to increase sperm production. In severe cases, sperm donation may be the best option for a couple to conceive.

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