Among the most frustrating and heartbreaking things a couple can go through is infertility. There is nothing more emotionally taxing than trying to conceive a child without success. While it is common to conclude that the physical issue lies within the woman, approximately one-third of the cases of infertility involve dysfunction of the male reproductive system. Approximately one-third of the cases of infertility involve dysfunction of the female reproductive system and one-third of the cases of infertility involve dysfunction of both the male and female reproductive systems. By identifying the cause of the fertility problem, we are able to offer couples true hope for a solution.
Diagnosing fertility problems requires testing for both the female and the male. At our Houston Fertility Center, we can perform recommended testing in our specialized lab, including semen analysis. This comprehensive testing ensures that we provide the best treatment for your unique case. Two common procedures used in the treatment of Houston male infertility are in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
Common Causes of Male Infertility
There are several causes of male infertility, including:
- Age: While age has a greater impact on the female reproductive system, age is also a factor for men. Men who are 40 years old and older may be less fertile than men of a younger age.
- Environmental factors: Overexposure to pesticides and chemicals may result in fertility issues. Constant exposure to heat, like a sauna or hot tub can lower sperm count. Anything that frequently raises the body’s core temperature can impair sperm production and cause lower sperm count. The lower the sperm count, the more difficult it is to conceive without medical assistance.
- Abnormal sperm production/function: Genetic defects, undescended testicles, repeated infections, as well as a number of other problems can result in abnormal sperm production and sperm function.
- Health issues: An unhealthy diet, obesity, diabetes, and many other health issues can cause motility issues and lower sperm count.
- Lifestyle issues: Lifestyle issues, such as alcohol use, tobacco use, and drug use, may impair sperm production.
- Past cancer treatment: Radiation and chemotherapy treatment can greatly impair sperm production. These treatments may have a severe impact on fertility. In the case of radiation, the closer the radiation therapy is to the testicles, the greater the risk of infertility. Fertility may also be affected if one or both
- Sperm delivery: Structural problems (such as a blockage in part of the testicle), sexual problems (such as premature ejaculation, erectile dysfunction, or painful intercourse), and other medical issues may result in poor sperm delivery. If there is a problem with sperm delivery, the sperm cannot fertilize the woman’s egg. Without this fertilization, pregnancy cannot be achieved.
Many times, for our patients in Houston, in vitro fertilization is the best treatment in the case of male infertility. Once we have definitively diagnosed the cause of your fertility problems, we will go over your treatment options in detail. During this time, we will discuss the advantages, disadvantages, risks, and likelihood of success associated with each possible treatment.
Contact Houston Fertility Center Today
If you would like further information about the causes of male infertility, or to schedule a consultation with our fertility specialist, please contact Houston Fertility Center today.