People sometimes overlook the chance that infertility problems could come from the male side as well. In fact, half the couples I treat have issues with male fertility.
Male infertility can arise from hormonal problems, chromosomal abnormalities or lifestyle factors. Smoking, drinking excess alcohol and obesity can all affect your hormones and your semen quality. But some men simply produce poor quality sperm, regardless of how healthy and active they are, while others might have more serious medical problems.
The most common types of male fertility problems include:
- Azoospermia, where no sperm are produced
- Oligospermia, where few sperm are produced
- Teratospermia, where a high proportion of sperm is abnormally shaped
- Blockages in the vas deferens – the tubes connecting the testes to the outside of the body – due to injury, vasectomy or genetic abnormality.
Sperm can also become malformed or die before they reach the egg. In rare cases, a genetic disease or congenital disorder could be at play, causing your infertility.
To diagnose male infertility, we may need to perform blood tests, chromosome analysis or other tests. The goods news is, most causes of male fertility can be overcome. Treatment could include microsurgery, or IVF treatment with ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection).
As age is always a factor in your fertility – especially if your female partner is over 36 – it is important to see a specialist if you are having trouble conceiving, and to act quickly.. I work closely with specialist urologists, if this expertise is needed, to provide the most up-to-date treatment options and help many couples with male infertility concerns go on to have healthy children.