Understanding Male Factor Infertility
A common misconception when a couple is faced with infertility issues is to automatically assume it’s a female condition. However, statistics show that out of the 10% of couples who struggle to get pregnant, 40% of infertility problems relate to the female, 40% to the male, and the remaining 10% due to a number of possibilities.Just as there are female treatments available there are male infertility treatment options available as well. If you and your significant other have practiced unprotected sex for a year and have not successfully gotten pregnant, or if you’ve been trying for 6 months and are over the age 35, it may be time to visit a fertility clinic to determine what may be the underlying cause.
Common Causes for Male Infertility
If you find yourself part of the statistic above, it may be time to consider the possible causes. Like many things in life, leading a healthy lifestyle can play a vital role. Factors such as alcohol and tobacco consumption, being overweight, and even emotional stress, are among the “easy fixes” for fertility issues. However, abnormal sperm function and production, or problems with delivering the sperm are the leading causes that may require you to explore other treatment options after consulting with an infertility specialist at Brown Fertility.
How is it Diagnosed?
The most effective way to identify male factor fertility issues is to perform a simple lab test called a semen analysis. The semen sample is analyzed to measure volume, and determine the number and quality of sperm. Although this test is normally completed at our office, patients are given the option to collect semen within the comfort of their home as long as it is received at the fertility clinic within 1 hour and is not exposed to extreme temperatures. The cost of a semen analysis is $125 but it is often covered by insurance.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection
A common treatment for male sperm-related infertility issues is intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), which is used in conjunction with in vitro fertilization (IVF). ICSI is the process of injecting a single sperm into a mature egg in order to fertilize it during the IVF process. The fertilized egg (embryo) is then transferred to the woman’s uterus to implant and result in pregnancy.
If you have questions about male infertility treatment or would like to schedule an appointment at Brown Fertility, please call us at 904-302-8168.