Significance of Semen Analysis in the Treatment of Male Infertility

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Significance of Semen Analysis in the Treatment of Male Infertility

What Is Semen Analysis?

Semen is a fluid that is released during ejaculation and contains sperm as well as other sugars and proteins.

Semen analysis is a procedure in which fertility specialists evaluate the overall quality, health, and vitality of semen and sperm of a male.

A collected semen sample is used by a laboratory technician to examine for many aspects that can affect overall fertility and is also called a sperm count test.

From in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI) to the general diagnosis of infertility, testing is an important part of many reproductive therapies.

Generally, two or three different sperm analysis tests are performed to get an idea of ​​the health of sperm.

An average of sperm samples taken at intervals of at least seven days and over the course of two to three months gives the most decisive results.

Why Does Semen Analysis Have to Be Done?

If a man sees his partner having problems getting pregnant after trying to conceive for a few months or a year, analysis of semen is recommended.

The assessment of male fertility is to be done in relation to the female fertility assessment.

Semen analysis is capable of measuring many different things in relation to semen as well as sperm. It includes all of the following:

Sperm count – It is known as the number of sperm per milliliter of semen is called sperm count.

A semen analysis should have a normal sperm count of more than 20 million to 200 million. Low sperm count can make conception difficult.

Sperm motility –  It is known as the ability of sperm to swim properly and plays an important role in fertility thus sperm must travel to fertilize an egg and if it is unable to do so there is less chance of fertilizing the egg.

Sperm MorphologySperm shape and physiology play a major role in fertility. Abnormally large sperm counts over 50 percent greatly reduce fertility.

Laboratory tests can detect abnormalities in the head, middle part, or tail of the sperm.

There is also a possibility that the sperm may be incomplete and therefore will not be able to fertilize an egg effectively.

Semen Volume – When a man’s sperm count decreases, his partner’s ability to conceive is greatly affected.

A normal size should be more than 2 ml and a small amount of semen indicates a low amount of sperm which reduces the ability of an egg to fertilize.

However, an excessive amount of fluid can also indicate a weakening of the amount of sperm present.

Liquefaction Time – Semen is usually gel-like until 20 minutes after ejaculation, the semen eventually turns into liquid.

Within 15 to 30 minutes the lack of ability of the sperm to liquefy can lead to a decrease in fertility as the fluid helps the sperm to move.

Fructose Level – The sugar in semen that helps nourish and energize sperm is called fructose. Low fructose levels can affect sperm viability.

Semen pH – Any problem with semen acidity or salinity can compromise sperm health. 

PH level – The ideal pH level falls between 7.2 and 7.8. Levels above 8.0 Ph can indicate infection and a level below 7.0 may indicate that the sample is contaminated or that the man’s ejaculatory ducts have been blocked.

Appearance – Semen should be white to grey and opaque in appearance. A reddish-brown color may indicate the presence of blood, while a yellow color may indicate jaundice or a medication side effect.

What Does an Abnormal Result Mean?

It is difficult for abnormal sperm to enter the egg, making conception difficult.

Abnormal results may reflect the following factors:

  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Gene defects
  • Infection
  • Infertility
  • Radiation exposure
  • Diseases such as diabetes

If the results come back, the doctor may recommend some additional tests. The following tests may be included:

  • Urine analysis after ejaculation
  • Anti-sperm immune cells test
  • Hormone testing
  • Tissue sampling from the testicle
  • Genetic testing

After the tests, the semen is analyzed and the issues raised are noted. For patients, a custom treatment plan can be developed by the fertility specialist.

Treatment of Male Infertility

A fertility specialist can address some of the issues of male infertility through lifestyle changes such as wearing the right type of underwear and a balanced diet to address problems with semen production and pH.

These changes can be discussed in more detail with a fertility specialist based on your needs.

However, if there are problems with sperm count or sperm motility, it is advisable to consider fertility treatments such as IVF and IUI, which can substantially increase the chances of having a child. In some cases, the use of a sperm donor may be recommended as the best option to start a family.

Also Read: How to improve the quality of egg after the age of 40

Why Get a Semen Analysis Done?

Semen analysis is one of the best ways to find out about male infertility.

Generally, it is recommended when couples are facing trouble getting pregnant and this test is helpful for a doctor to determine whether a man is infertile.

Analysis can also help determine whether infertility is caused by a low sperm count or its dysfunction.

Outlook After Semen Analysis

Careful collection and analysis of many samples can lead to proper semen analysis and it can provide a variety of information that can be a decisive factor affecting male fertility.

If there is the case of abnormal tests, then the fertility specialist can help establish lifestyle changes and a proper line of treatment.

For more information on male infertility treatment and how we can assist you, contact a top fertility specialist, Dr. Shivani Bhutani, at Eva Hospital Ludhiana.

The Hospital uses cutting-edge technology to improve fertility for couples who want to start a family.    

About The Author

Dr Shivani Bhutani
A doctor with a rich background and high success rate, Dr. Shivani Bhutani offers the boon of parenthood to couples dealing with infertility. She has opulent knowledge and expertise in offering successful treatment for infertility in females, gynecological disorders, and family planning consultation services. Highly dedicated, concerned, and attentive, Dr. Shivani understands the bliss of parenthood and offers appropriate medical help.