Understanding Causes of Male Infertility
posted by Urology | June 5, 2017
Sexual intercourse is the primary method of conception, but about 13 percent of couples are unable to get pregnant through unprotected sex. Many potential causes of infertility exist in both men and women, and in over a third of these cases, the male is responsible. This is a condition known as male infertility.
Male infertility is most often due to complications with sperm production or sperm delivery. It can be affected by a variety of factors and causes, but a number of treatment and prevention options are also available.
In a normal, fertile male reproductive system, the body makes small cells called sperm. During intercourse, male ejaculation delivers the sperm into the woman’s body, where it can fertilize an egg and begin the conception process. This sperm production in males is controlled by hormones.
If there are problems with genes, hormone levels or environmental factors, however, it’s possible for this process to be interrupted.
Several factors are involved in the production of mature, healthy sperm. For conception to take place, all of the following factors must be present:
Causes of male infertility can be medical, environmental or lifestyle-related. Medical causes of infertility include:
Environmental causes of male infertility relate to elements like heat, toxins and chemicals that decrease sperm production or function. These causes include:
Factors related to health, lifestyle and other causes include:
There are numerous possible treatments for male infertility, and in many cases, it can be fixed with drugs or surgery to allow proper conception through intercourse. There are also tactics you can try to help prevent infertility in some cases. If you’re experiencing issues with fertility, speak to your doctor about options for your specific diagnosis.
“Male infertility.” The Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/male-infertility/basics/definition/con-20033113
“What is Male Infertility?” Urology Care Foundation. http://www.urologyhealth.org/urologic-conditions/male-infertility
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.