An estimated 13% of couples are unable to become pregnant with unprotected sex. In more than one-third of cases, the problem is with the male.
Symptoms of Male Infertility
Though the main sign of male infertility is the inability to conceive a child, there may be other symptoms signaling male infertility, such as:
- Difficulty with ejaculation
- Small volumes of fluid during ejaculation
- Reduced sexual desire
- Erectile dysfunction
- Pain, swelling, or a lump in the testicles
- Difficulty with sense of smell
- Abnormal breast growth
- Recurrent respiratory infections
- Decreased facial or body hair
- Abnormally low sperm count
When You Should Consult With The Best Urologist in Orange County
Patients who are unable to conceive a child after one year of regular, unprotected sex should seek out the best urologist in Orange County. Dr. Yafi will take the time to find out if there is a history of testicle, prostate or sexual problems, or if the infertility may be caused by a groin, testicle, penis or scrotum surgery.
Causes of Male Infertility
Male infertility is typically caused by problems with sperm production or sperm delivery. Males with infertility may have problems with cells growing into sperm, sperm reaching the egg, or temperature in the scrotum. The best urologist in Orange County, Dr. Yafi, can help male patients understand the cause of their infertility and recommend treatment.
Common sperm disorders are associated with sperm that is:
- Not fully grown
- Oddly shaped
- Moving in the wrong direction
- Made in very low numbers (oligospermia)
- Not made at all (azoospermia)
Problems with the sperm can be caused by inherited traits; lifestyle choices such as smoking, drinking alcohol or taking certain medications; long-term sickness (such as kidney failure), chromosome or hormone problems that lower levels of testosterone, childhood infections (such as mumps), birth defect, infection, or an obstruction.
Varicoceles are swollen veins in the scrotum found in 16 out of 100 men, but more common in infertile men (40 out of 100). Varicoceles block proper blood drainage and cause blood to flow back into the scrotum from the belly. As a result, the testicles are too warm to make sperm, leading to low sperm production.
Retrograde ejaculation occurs when semen travels backwards into the body (into the bladder), instead of out of the penis. If the nerves and muscles in the bladder don’t close during an orgasm, the semen is unable to reach the vagina.
Medications may also impair sperm production, function and delivery. These medications are prescribed to treat conditions such as cancer, high blood pressure, digestive problems, depression, arthritis and infections.
Treatment of Male Infertility
Depending on the cause of male infertility, the following treatments may be recommended:
- Surgery (to correct a varicocele, remove an obstruction, retrieve sperm, etc.)
- Treat infections with antibiotics
- Treat sexual intercourse problems with medication or counseling
- Hormone treatment and medication, such as hormone replacement
- Assisted reproductive technology (ART) to surgically extract sperm and perform in vitro fertilization
Couples who struggle to conceive a child should schedule an appointment with the best urologist in Orange County, Dr. Yafi, to get the care and treatment they deserve.