Testing and Treating Male Fertility 2020

The current issue of RBMO (Reproductive BioMedicine Online- Dec 19, 39, #6,pp 879) editorial covers our current knowledge of this subject, which is summarised below:

  • Male factor infertility as diagnosed by failure to conceive, or tested by semen analysis and DNA (oxidative damage) makes it a major factor in a couple's infertility.
  • ¬†Currently no test, where sperm is produced and tested, can definitively show whether a male is capable of creating a live birth or not!
  • Advancing female age adds to the impact of male factor problem
  • Multiple studies of the use of antioxidants, Zinc, Folic acid and others have so far failed to show a significant increase in live births (however certain outcomes such as improved motility are noted) Major trials are underway.
  • ¬†At this time the best the male can do is to improve his general health, prevent or manage being overweight, stop alcohol, for at least 3 months prior to using his sperm for treatment and increase his intake of leafy green vegetables(folic acid). In addition smoking and all recreational drugs need to be avoided.
  • The final option for severe male factor problems is to consider ART which is commonly ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection- a variant of IVF)