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Male factor infertility is a common problem these days and it describes those couples that have failed to be pregnant owing to health issues of the male partner. While in most cases, people have a general misconception that infertility is related to female reproductive issues only, recent statistics say otherwise.
Various reasons can be attributed to male infertility which may range from low production of sperm to poor quality sperms, to abnormal morphology. Male factor infertility is also related to men who have normal sperm production, but it does not get transported to the vagina during intercourse.
Evaluating male factor infertility-
It is crucial to evaluate men who are suspected to be infertile through comprehensive checkups, physical tests, and numerous semen analysis. In certain conditions, additional tests and evaluations may also be required. For men with a severely low production of sperms, and poor sperm motility, it is important to consider karyotypic abnormalities. Male factor infertility was previously regarded as a contraindication to in-vitro fertilization since the presence of abnormal sperms may not be able to fertilize female eggs. But recent statistics show that there is an indication of IVF allowing fertilization and eventual live births in couples where the man has impaired sperms. IVF has shown commendable success in the treatment of such men.
When to consider IVF?
It goes without saying that IVF has benefitted many couples suffering from male factor infertility over a decade. Some of the most common problems treated by IVF include:
- Men having poor quality semen which may involve poor motility, low concentration and even poor morphology dealing with the shape of the sperm.
- Couples who have failed to conceive through normal intercourse and conventional infertility treatments.
- Men with non-obstructive and poor quality sperms can also benefit from the IVF process. Generally, such men produce sperm in a reduced quantity and also have an absence of sperm in their ejaculate. Some men who have undergone chemotherapy may also have compromised sperm quality as well as quantity.
- Men suffering from the congenital bilateral absence of the vas deferens or CBAVD are able to produce sperm but they do not have the vas deferens which is the outflow tract.
- Lastly, men who have undergone vasectomies and did not wish to undergo a reversal can obtain sperm that can be used in the IVF process.
Regardless of what’s causing infertility, it is important to consult an IVF expert to get through the process. IVF with the help of intracytoplasmic sperm injection is an advanced laboratory process in which a healthy sperm is injected into an egg for creating an embryo which is subsequently implanted into the uterus of the women. Besides the IVF treatment, medications and hormone therapy may also be used for altering high or low hormone level affecting fertility.
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