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Sperm Production Disorders

The Basics

The Basics

Male factor infertility may occur if sperm are produced in low numbers, or if many of the sperm produced are abnormal in shape or not able to move well. Abnormally shaped sperm may not be able to penetrate and fertilize an egg. Sperm that do not move well may not reach the egg.

Causes of Sperm Production Disorders

Causes of sperm production disorders may include a genetic defect, infection, testicular trauma, hormonal imbalance, or exposure to radiation and certain medications. Testosterone replacement therapy (either oral, injectable, or topical) will markedly reduce or stop sperm production as well.

Tests

diagnostic tests for sperm production disorders

After reviewing your medical history and the results of your physical examination, your doctor will order a semen analysis to evaluate your sperm. If the analysis is normal, your doctor may also want to check for a hormonal imbalance (testosterone, etc.) and for genetic defects.

Treatment

treatment for sperm production disorders

Quite often, the reason for male infertility is unknown, so your doctor may speak to you about other options, such as intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), and other similar procedures. IVF with intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) has become a revolutionary procedure for patients with male factor infertility, as embryologists only need to isolate a single healthy sperm to fertilize an egg.

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