If pregnancy is not possible despite having intercourse for a year regularly and without any contraceptives, then, the reason might be infertility. In some societies, unfortunately, women are the first ones to be blamed for infertility. In fact, infertility has the male factor by 40%, female factor by 40%, both male and female factors by 10% and idiopathic (with unknown cause) by 10%. The diagnostic process for couples having problems in getting pregnant should start with the man, because it is possible to detect male infertility earlier and easier with a simple sperm analysis.
The causes of male infertility may be listed as varicoceles, sperm disorders, hormonal reasons, immunological reasons, obstruction of the ejaculatory ducts, retrograde ejaculation, genetics, undescended testicles, erectile problems, long-term medication use, excessive alcohol consumption and/or smoking, and systemic diseases. The examination of the male patient is carried out by a urologist. In the examination, the general health condition of the patient, his habits (alcohol, cigarette use etc.), his frequency of sexual intercourse and physiological sexual functions such as erection and ejaculation are questioned. Afterwards, fertility is examined through semen analysis following abstinence for a period of 3-4 days. In the case of any problems detected with the semen analysis, further tests are requested.
The treatment of male infertility is carried out by applying specific treatments depending on its causes like a varicocele or low or zero sperm count. In some severe cases, treatment may not be possible.
Treatment options may be medical, surgical methods, as well as assisted reproductive techniques like intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
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