- infertility due to male factors
What is going on in the body?
What are the causes and risks of the condition?
diabetic neuropathy, in which nerve damage causes problems with erection or ejaculation
- hormone imbalances, such as
hypothyroidism hypogonadism, a condition in which the testes fail to develop normally
- inherited conditions that impair the ability to produce sperm, such as
Down syndrome testicular torsion, a condition in which the blood supply to the testicle is cut off undescended testicles, a condition in which the testes fail to drop into the scrotum varicocele, a group of enlarged veins inside the scrotum autoimmune disorders, which can cause the body to produce antibodies that attack sperm liver disease sickle cell anemia kidney disease
- genital infections such as
gonorrheaand genital herpes
- infections of the reproductive organs, such as
- other infectious diseases, including
- certain medications, such as cimetidine and phenytoin
- certain supplements, such as anabolic steroids
chemotherapyused for cancer
- diet low in
folic acidor low in lycopene, which is found in plants such as tomatoes
- excessive exercise, which lowers testosterone levels and decreases sperm production
exposure to diethylstilbestrol, also known as DES,as an infant in utero
- exposure to toxins such as
lead, mercury, or pesticides
- frequent hot baths or use of hot tubs
- injury to the testicles
- low sperm count, poor sperm quality, and poor movement of sperm
- use of recreational drugs, such as
alcohol, methadone, and marijuana
- sexual problems, such as
erectile dysfunctionand premature ejaculation
- side effects of treatments for
testicular canceror prostate cancer
- surgery of the reproductive system, such as
transurethral resection of the prostate vasectomy, a surgical procedure to tie off the sperm-carrying tubes
- wearing tight-fitting pants and underwear
- work that requires prolonged sitting, which increases the temperature in the scrotum
What can be done to prevent the condition?
- Avoiding drugs and medications known to cause fertility problems.
- Avoiding excessive exercise.
- Avoiding exposure to environmental hazards such as pesticides.
- Avoiding frequent hot baths or use of hot tubs.
- Avoiding tight underwear or pants.
- Eating a diet with adequate folic acid.
- Getting prompt treatment for sexually transmitted infections.
- Having regular physical examinations to detect early signs of infections or abnormalities.
- Keeping diseases, such as diabetes and hypothyroidism, under control.
- Practicing safest sex or safer sex to reduce one's risk for sexually transmitted infections.
- Taking a lycopene supplement.
- Wearing protection over the scrotum during athletic activities.
How is the condition diagnosed?
Long Term Effects
What are the long-term effects of the condition?
What are the risks to others?
What are the treatments for the condition?
- avoiding extended periods of time in hot baths and hot tubs
- eating a healthy diet and exercising in moderation
- having a
- having vasectomy reversal surgery, which reconnects the tubes carrying sperm from the testes
- learning about the best times to conceive
- making lifestyle changes, such as
smoking cessationand limiting intake of alcohol
- taking antibiotics for any diagnosed infection
- taking hormone therapy
erectile dysfunctionwith counseling, medication, or surgery
- wearing loose-fitting underwear, such as boxer shorts
- artificial insemination. This involves placing sperm directly in the cervix or uterus as a medical procedure.
- in vitro fertilization (IVF). This involves fertilizing the egg with sperm in a laboratory, then returning the resulting embryo to the woman's uterus as a medical procedure.
- intracytoplasmic sperm injection. This version of IVF involves placing the individual sperm cells directly inside the woman's eggs in the laboratory, rather than just together in the same dish.
What are the side effects of the treatments?
What happens after treatment for the condition?
How is the condition monitored?
The Merck Manual of Medical Information, Home edition, 1997
Professional Guide to Diseases, Sixth Edition. Springhouse: Springhouse Corporation, 1998.
Tierney, Lawrence, editor, "Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment, 39th edition", 2000