Sperm cell going into egg

Male Infertility

Fertility is often closely monitored, widely tested, and treated in women. But what happens when male infertility is the issue?

Male infertility is more common than you think, with 40 to 50% of infertility caused by male-related factors. Fortunately, treatments exist.

The Houston Fertility Center in Houston, TX, uses advanced solutions to help men achieve fertility and grow their families.

Exploring the Medical Causes of Male Infertility

While the most common type of male infertility is idiopathic, meaning the cause is unknown, the condition may also be due to specific disorders. In particular, male-factor infertility can be caused by:

  • Gonad disorder
  • Sperm transport disorder
  • A disorder of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus

If You Have a Fertility Issue, You're Not Alone Request a consultation to get started on a treatment plan

According to Yale Medicine, male infertility is responsible for about 40 to 50 percent of fertility-related issues and affects about 15 percent of couples in the United States. Houston Fertility Center is here to help patients identify these issues, provide treatment, and increase their chances of a successful pregnancy. An evaluation can help us provide a diagnosis and guide our fertility specialist, Dr. Sonja B. Kristiansen, in developing a custom treatment plan to help you achieve your dreams of expanding your family. Request a consultation today by contacting our Houston, TX, clinic online or calling us at:

(713) 225-5375

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"I love this place..." 5-Star Reviews from Houston, TX, Patients


Celeste Garcia

Houston, TX


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I love this place the nurses definitely put alot of definition into this clinic. Without them and their kindness I probably wouldn't have made it mentally. Anytime I had a question they answered whether through phone call or email. It was the best!.. Thank you to Blanca and Mayra for making this the best experience for me! I'll be seeing yall again in another year or 2. ❤️

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Vicky Montenegro

Houston, TX


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I love this place and Dr. K has a high success rate. This is why I initially went to her clinic. They don’t treat you like a business but it’s very personal. I was successful on my first IVF attempt and had a healthy baby girl. I will be using her for my next baby when I’m able. Highly recommended.

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Understanding the Male Reproductive System and How It Relates to Male Infertility

The male reproductive system is complex. Any number of issues can cause male infertility. The testes produce testosterone, which stimulates sperm production. Infertile sperm matures within the epididymis. During intercourse, the sperm travel from the epididymis through the vas deferens and to the seminal vesicles. There, a sugar-rich fluid provides the sperm with energy and aids in motility. This fluid is the primary component in male ejaculate.
illustration of the male reproductive system (ureter, seminal vesicle, bulbourethral gland, testicle, urethra, penis head, epididymis, erectile tissue, prostate, vas deferens)

Low Sperm Count Can Cause Fertility Issues

Low sperm count is one of the main causes of male infertility. It can be caused by factors such as genetics, environment, and lifestyle, among others. Our doctor can find the cause of your low sperm count and determine the best course of treatment. 

Normal Sperm Count
Normal Sperm Count
Low Sperm Count
Low Sperm Count

Common Factors That Affect Male Fertility

Many factors can contribute to male infertility. If the cause is genetic, lifestyle changes won't reverse infertility, but they can help stop other issues preventing you from conceiving. There are certain factors that can increase the chance for male-factor infertility, including:

  • Tobacco use
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Obesity
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Toxin exposure
  • Issues with the testicles, including trauma or overheating
  • A prior vasectomy
  • Family history of fertility issues
  • Certain medical conditions or diseases
  • Cancer treatments, such as radiation or chemotherapy

When Should I See a Doctor for Male Infertility?

There are several reasons to seek help for suspected male infertility, and they can vary by patient. The causes of male infertility are often beyond your control, but our Houston fertility specialists can help identify any issues and offer treatment options to increase your chances of a successful pregnancy.

man and woman looking sadly at a pregnancy test

Lack of Pregnancy

Visit our fertility doctor if you and your partner are younger than 35 and have been trying to get pregnant for a year without success. You can also visit our fertility practice if you or your partner are over 35 years old and have been trying for six months.

a male doctor speaking with a male patient, looking at a chart

Existing Concerns

If you have already identified issues that may prevent you from becoming pregnant, such as prior chemotherapy or an injury, contact our Houston fertility clinic so we can help. Please bring any relevant medical documentation you may have to help with the process.

a needle penetrating a human egg cell

Previous Fertility Issues

Some patients have already identified male infertility. Patients who have had to undergo prior fertility treatment in order to get pregnant can contact our Houston fertility clinic so we can help them on their subsequent journeys to expand their families.

Having Trouble Conceiving? Request a Consultation to Gain Clarity

Infertility affects millions of women and men, but reproductive treatment can help. Finding a solution to your problem begins with identifying the cause. At the Houston Fertility Center, we are committed to helping patients overcome infertility with advanced testing and treatments performed by a highly skilled team. Request a consultation with Dr. Sonja B. Kristiansen to begin treating your fertility issues. Contact us online or call us at:

(713) 225-5375


"Professional and Friendly"

"Going through infertility is one of the most difficult things a family could go through. Dr. Kristiansen and her staff, Melissa, Mayra, Blanca and Lana helped to ensure the most positive experience. They were always professional and friendly and I always felt like I could call them anytime with all my questions (which I did). They never made me feel like I was just a patient or a number they always made me feel special." Kristina Lesniak, 2022

Medical Conditions That Can Cause Male Infertility

The following medical conditions can cause issues within the male reproductive system. 

  • Cancer
  • Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, or HIV
  • Diabetes
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Mumps
  • Genetic Defects
  • Depression

The Treatment Process for Male Infertility

With over 20 years of experience helping patients increase their chances of conception, Dr. Kristiansen can provide compassionate and thorough diagnoses and treatment for male infertility.
With over 20 years of experience helping patients increase their chances of conception, Dr. Kristiansen can provide compassionate and thorough diagnoses and treatment for male infertility.

Begin With a Consultation

Our doctor will gather information about your medical history, family history, and lifestyle during your initial consultation. The consultation and initial exams will help her determine if you may be infertile. We may request a semen sample for analysis.

Diagnostic Tests

Dr. Kristiansen can perform several diagnostic tests when male reproductive infertility is suspected. These may include physical examinations, blood testing, and semen analysis. 

Start a Treatment Plan

Once male infertility is diagnosed, you can move forward with treatment. There are many options available to you. Our Houston, TX, office offers virtually every form of male infertility treatment to create a treatment plan personalized to your needs. 

Ready to Start Your Journey? Get in touch for a consultation at Houston Fertility Center

At the Houston Fertility Center, we understand that the journey to pregnancy can be emotionally taxing, and many patients often shoulder the blame. It is important to remember that most fertility issues are beyond your control, and experiencing male infertility doesn't mean hope is lost.

Advances in reproductive medicine mean we can help more patients than ever increase their chances of a successful pregnancy. Identifying the issue is the first step in the journey. We are here to guide you every step of the way.

Start your journey to growing your family by completing our online form or by calling us at:

Man and woman smiling over a pregnancy test

"From start to finish the team will be there..." More Reviews From Houston Patients


Diana B

Houston, TX


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Dr. Kristiansen and all the staff are great. We went in for a RIVF consultation and due to the way they treated us and made us feel we decided to begin the process as soon as we were able to. We will always be thankful to Dr. Kristiansen, Blanca, Melissa and especially Mayra they are all amazing, they helped us with our thousand questions and doubts and when we felt discouraged they kept our spirits up. Thanks to them we are now expecting our precious baby girl. We definitely recommend Houston Fertility Center.

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Andreana Uribe

Houston, TX


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Well where to being, Dr.K , Lana , Michelle , and all the rest of the team here are the most amazing, caring, and genuine group of people you could ask for. Especially when dealing with such an emotional experience such as infertility. Their facility is extremely clean, the girls are always smiling and helpful with any questions you need answered and from the very beginning of the process they provide you all the information up front! From start to finish the team will be there, you can’t ask for anything more in my opinion. 

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Our Available Treatment Options For Male Infertility

When a patient is diagnosed with male-factor infertility, several treatment options are available to address the issue. Of course, the recommended treatment will depend on the specific cause of male infertility.


Fertility Supplements

Low sperm production caused by retrograde ejaculation, a reversed vasectomy, and other factors may be improved with male fertility supplements, which can be purchased in most health food stores. This treatment method is often combined with more extensive treatments to yield better results.


Artificial Insemination

If low sperm count is to blame for your reproductive challenges, artificial insemination, otherwise known as intracytoplasmic sperm injection, can be beneficial. During this process, sperm is collected from multiple semen samples. Once obtained, they can be delivered directly to your partner's fallopian tubes or uterus. 


In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

Another treatment option for low sperm count is IVF. This treatment involves harvesting eggs from the female and collecting sperm from the male. The eggs are then fertilized with the sperm in a laboratory setting. After a few days, the resulting embryos are implanted directly into the woman’s uterus.



INVOcell is an alternative practice similar to IVF. The INVOcell is a small device that holds the sperm and egg. It is placed inside the vagina for a short incubation period of a few days. The fertilization period occurs within the INVOcell instead of in a laboratory setting. 


Donor Sperm

If there is zero sperm production, also known as azoospermia, then donor sperm can be used. These sperm are collected from a trusted sperm bank and delivered to the woman’s fallopian tubes or uterus with intracytoplasmic sperm injection. 

"I highly recommend this facility..." More 5-Star Reviews from Houston, TX, Patients


Dave Bertrand


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Definitely want to thank Houston Fertility clinic helping my wife get pregnant and having a baby girl I’m so blessed to have her the staff was great thank y’all for everything

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BuffBird Akingbade

Houston, TX


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We had a perfect baby boy and now, we going for a second time for the last time, fingers crossed. I highly recommend this facility because, in my opinion, they are upfront about expectations. 

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Take the First Step Request a consultation today

No one wants to hear that they have fertility issues. We understand just how emotional this journey can be, and we are here to help every step of the way. Advancements in reproductive technology are allowing doctors to help more patients than ever overcome the obstacle of infertility and achieve their dreams of parenthood. 

The first step of the journey is a consultation with our skilled fertility specialist, Dr. Kristiansen. Request an appointment by filling out our online form or by calling our office in Houston, TX, today:

(713) 225-5375

Reducing Your Risk of Infertility

In general, there is no way to prevent male infertility caused by genetic issues or disease. However, there are several ways to promote healthy sperm production and increase fertility.

  • Consume alcohol in moderation
  • Protect yourself against STDs
  • Avoid overheating the testicles (hot baths, saunas, or Jacuzzis)
  • Wear loose-fitting underwear
  • Avoid exposure to toxic chemicals and radiation
  • Practice good hygiene
  • Exercise and eat a well-balanced diet
  • Avoid tobacco products

The Cost of Treating Male Infertility

The cost of your male infertility treatment can vary based on the cause of your issue and your treatment plan. Factors that will influence the cost of fertility treatment include whether you undergo IVF or INVOcell and if you use donor eggs or sperm.

Insurance Coverage and Affordability

Some types of insurance will help to cover the cost of fertility treatment. We work with most major insurance providers, which can help reduce any out-of-pocket costs. Our Houston clinic offers low standard pricing and discounted packages and bundles to help patients get the treatment they need to increase their odds of a successful pregnancy. 

The best way to get an accurate quote is through a consultation with Dr. Kristiansen. She can develop a custom treatment plan and explain the specific costs involved. 

Terms to Know When Navigating Male Infertility


Semen Analysis

This test analyzes your sperm and checks for low sperm count, issues with motility, and other sperm-related issues.



In the field of reproduction, motility refers to how the sperm moves. Healthy sperm motility is forward movement of at least 25 micrometers per second.



Also known as low sperm count, this occurs when the semen contains an abnormally low amount of sperm. An average sperm count is around 15 million sperm per 1 milliliter of ejaculate. Oligospermia is diagnosed through semen analysis.



This is the complete absence of sperm in the ejaculate. Like oligospermia, azoospermia is diagnosed through semen analysis.



The epididymis is a duct that runs behind the testis. This duct allows sperm to pass to the vas deferens.


Seminiferous Tubules

This coiled structure is located in the testes and is where sperm production occurs. 



Spermatogenesis is the process by which sperm cells are created.



Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone and aids in the production of sperm. 


Vas Deferens

The vas deferens is a duct that carries the sperm to the urethra. 

Frequently Asked Questions  About Male Infertility

Q. Can male infertility be prevented?

A. In some cases, yes. However, if you have a congenital or medical issue that is causing your infertility, these are often unavoidable. For other cases, following our tips above, like proper hygiene, protection against STDs, etc., you can reduce your risk of developing male factor infertility. 

Q. Can hot tubs cause male infertility?

A. Hot tubs increase the temperature of the testes, which can lower sperm production. If you are trying to conceive, it is best to avoid hot tubs, especially if you already have a low sperm count. Tight underwear can also cause the testes to overheat, thus lowering sperm production. 

Q. Will a vasectomy reversal solve my infertility?

A. Vasectomy reversals are successful about 60%-95% of the time. However, a reversal is not a guarantee that you will be able to get your partner pregnant, even if the reversal is a success. There are a number of factors that must be considered, including how long it has been since your vasectomy, the health of you and your partner, and more. 

Q. How does a semen analysis determine male factor infertility?

A. During a semen analysis, your doctor will look at the quality and quantity of the sperm in your semen. Things your doctor will look for include the absence of sperm, the quantity of sperm, the shape of the sperm, and how the sperm are moving. 

Q. How does sperm motility impact fertility?

A. If a sperm is unable to move toward the egg, then the egg cannot be fertilized. This could be slow-moving sperm or even sperm that move in circles. Your doctor will examine how your sperm are moving. A few odd swimmers are usually not a cause for concern, but if a large number have an issue, this may be the cause of your fertility issues. 

A Glowing Review From One of Our Patients

"Dear Dr. Sonja Kristiansen and staff, words cannot express our happiness and the joy you have brought to our lives! thank you for all your kindness and caring during our invoke cell procedure, you helped us make our dream come true. We have the sweetest little boy now and are truly blessed each day. The entire experience was so very amazing, you are a great doctor with awesome staff that makes each person feel like an individual. You found a way to make a stressful situation a personal, rewarding one." angy quezada - 2022
Dr. Sonja Kristiansen

Houston Fertility Center

Dr. Sonja Kristiansen is the founder and Medical Director of Houston Fertility Center. She is a board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologist Infertility (REI) specialist who is proud to help hopeful parents fulfill their dreams of having children. Our center is affiliated with the:

  • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
  • American Society for Reproductive Medicine
  • Texas Medical Association

We provide convenient care for patients from greater Houston and visitors from out of town. For more information about our services, contact our office online or call (713) 225-5375 today.

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