According to the Indian Society of Assisted Reproduction(ISAR), 10-14% of the Indian population suffers from Infertility which is about 27.5 million. Around 1 in 6 couples struggle to conceive in the urban areas, showing that infertility is a very common issue that greatly impacts many people. It is understood now that around 50% of these infertility issues are due to known malefactors around 1 in 3 men in the metro cities.
What causes infertility in men?
Infertility in men can be caused by a range of different factors.They are:-
- Lifestyle factors—lack of exercise, obesity, smoking, alcohol, stress, etc
- Diseases in childhood—like mumps, etc
- Medical diseases—varicocele/STDs etc.
- Environmental pollution— heavy metals, fertilizers, pesticides, plastics, etc
What should a man do if he is concerned about his fertility?
If you are concerned about your fertility, you should see an infertility specialist for further advice. A simple semen analysis from a good laboratory solves any concern.
How to improve male fertility?
Factors that can impact male fertility are
- Changing your lifestyle include: improving your diet, exercise to improve your BMI,
- Reducing chemical exposure e.g. recreational drugs, smoking, alcohol, and steroids, and pollutants
- Avoiding unsafe sex which may lead to sexually transmitted infections/ diseases causing infertility.
- Medicines to improve sperm count and motility.
- Surgery in case of Varicocoel etc
How is male infertility treated?
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is one of the most straightforward and simple fertility treatments and is available at all INFERTILITY clinics. Sperm is prepared in the laboratory and is then transferred directly into a woman’s uterus. This increases the chances that the sperm will reach the egg to fertilize it by decreasing the distance needed to travel, ideal for men with low sperm motility or a low sperm count. AdditionallyICSI is also available for couples suffering from male infertility. ICSI can be included in a couple’s IVF treatment to facilitate fertilization. The man must provide a semen sample, or undergo Surgical Sperm Retrieval if necessary, for the best quality spermatozoa to be selected and inserted directly into the female’s oocyte bringing both cells together for the highest chance of fertilization.
What is a male infertility test?
If you wish to test your fertility, then you can arrange to have a semen analysis test. A semen analysis test is available to analyse your sperm count and assess the mobility of your sperm. A semen analysis also checks to see if a male’s sperm has any abnormalities. A semen analysis is available at all infertility clinics.
What doctor should I see for male fertility?
Initially, you may consult an infertility specialist if you have any concerns about your fertility.They will then guide you and plan accordingly the next way forward . If need be may refer to an andrologist in their team to take care of the specific problem.
What advise is given to men suffering from infertility?
Firstly it is a medical problem and there is nothing to be ashamed or upset about it. It is no mistake of yours and it is not the end of the road. With the current advancement in Reproductive medicine, parenthood is achievable up to 40-50% even in cases of no sperms(azoospermia) Secondly the advice is to start treatment early because success is more at a younger age.