Good day blogger and a warm welcome to the Yash IVF blog site. We are in the practice of solving infertility puzzles and offering the joy of parenthood. Pregnancy is a moment of joy and happiness for couples that are trying to conceive. No wonder, the struggle of infertility is deep and equally affects both sexes. Even though the World Health Organization (WHO) has classified infertility as a disease, it is often diagnosed as an inability to conceive even after 12 months of trying. One of the most common causes of infertility in men is low sperm count. A low sperm count can significantly reduce the chances of fertilization, making it difficult for couples to conceive. Let us explore in this blog, the causes of low sperm count and ways to achieve pregnancy despite having a low sperm count.
While infertility is treatable, it can have a significant impact on a person’s physical and emotional health. It can cause feelings of sadness, frustration, and inadequacy, and can also put a strain on relationships. For this reason, it is important for individuals who are struggling with infertility to seek medical assistance and emotional support.
What is Low Sperm Count?
Low sperm count is a condition that affects the quality and quantity of sperm in men. It is also known as oligospermia, and it is diagnosed when the sperm count is less than 15 million sperm per millilitre of semen. The normal range of sperm count is between 15 million to 200 million sperm per milliliter of semen.
Causes of Low Sperm Count
There are several causes of low sperm count. Some of the common causes include:
Hormonal Imbalances: Hormonal imbalances can affect the production of sperm in men. Conditions such as hypogonadism, which is the underproduction of testosterone, can lead to low sperm count.
Infections: Certain STD infections, chlamydia and gonorrhoea can damage the reproductive organ and production of sperm.
Varicocele: When the veins in the scrotum become enlarged leading to damage to the testicles and affecting the production of sperm.
Medications: Certain medications such as steroids, chemotherapy drugs, and antidepressants can affect the production of sperm.
Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, and drug abuse can affect the production of sperm.
Genetic Factors: Genetic factors such as Klinefelter syndrome can affect the production of sperm.
How to achieve Pregnancy with a Low Sperm Count?
Fertility Treatment: Fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) can help couples achieve pregnancy despite having a low sperm count. In IVF, the eggs are fertilized outside the body and then implanted in the uterus. This bypasses the need for sperm to travel through the cervix and uterus.
Intrauterine Insemination (IUI): Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a procedure where the sperm is washed and concentrated before being inserted directly into the uterus. This increases the chances of fertilization and can help couples achieve pregnancy despite having a low sperm count.
Surgery: Surgery can be performed to correct certain conditions that may be causing low sperm count. For example, varicocele can be corrected through surgery, which can improve the quality and quantity of sperm.
Lifestyle Changes: Lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, reducing alcohol consumption, and maintaining a healthy diet can improve the quality and quantity of sperm. Exercise can also improve sperm count and motility.
Medications: Certain medications can be prescribed to improve sperm count and motility. For example, clomiphene citrate can be used to stimulate the production of testosterone, which can improve sperm count.
Use of Donor Sperm: If all other methods fail, the use of donor sperm can be an option for couples trying to conceive.
While stating so, sperm is a male gamete and its integrity is very important. Sperm DNA forms 50% of the genome of the baby. Let’s in brief answer a few commonly asked questions about low sperm count.
1. What is a low sperm count for pregnancy?
if you have fewer than 15 million sperm per ml or less than 39 million sperm per ejaculate. The chance of pregnancy decreases with decreasing sperm counts.
2. What is the main cause of low sperm count?
Lifestyle choices can lower sperm numbers. Smoking, drinking alcohol, and certain medications can lower sperm numbers too. Kidney failure, childhood infections (such as mumps), or hormone problems
3. Are there any symptoms that indicate low sperm count?
There are no specific symptoms associated with low sperm count. However, the following problems are often reported, maintaining an erection during intercourse.
Pain, and discomfort in the testicle
History of prostate or sexual problems or male reproductive surgery.
4. Do infections affect sperm count?
Inflammation of the testicles or sexually transmitted infections like HIV or Gonorrhea may cause a decrease in sperm count. Do consult the doctor and do a semen analysis. There are many time-tested treatments available to treat infections.
5. Can testosterone injections for bodybuilding affect my sperm count and fertility?
Testosterone injections, if taken for a longer duration, will suppress the production of sperm and affect your sperm count. And may delay the pregnancy.
A man’s sperm count can be affected by factors such as diet, lifestyle, and age.
Even though the sperm factory is active for a long duration, and Low sperm count still can be a major obstacle for couples trying to conceive. However, there are several ways to achieve pregnancy despite having a low sperm count. Fertility treatments such as IVF and IUI, surgery, lifestyle changes, and medications can all be effective in improving the quality and quantity of sperm. It is important to seek the advice of a healthcare professional to determine the best course of action.
We at Yash IVF, Deccan have a diagnostic wing of excellence to diagnose and treat cases of low sperm counts. Having a robust, time-tested protocol in place, we could offer the joy of parenthood to many such couples. Do visit us to know more