KNOW MORE ABOUT MEN'S REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH.
Reproductive health is an important component of men's overall health and well-being. Too often, males have been overlooked in discussions of reproductive health, especially when reproductive issues such as contraception and infertility have been perceived as female-related. Every day, men, their partners, and health care providers can protect their reproductive health by ensuring effective contraception, avoiding sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and preserving fertility.
What causes male infertility? Male infertility can be caused by problems that affect sperm production or the sperm transport process.
Known causes of male infertility can be:
A. Sperm production problems: The most common cause of male infertility is due to a problem in the sperm production process in the testes. Low numbers of sperm are made and/or the sperm that are made do not work properly. About two thirds of infertile men have sperm production problems.
B. Blockage of sperm transport: Blockages (often referred to as obstructions) in the tubes leading sperm away from the testes to the penis can cause a complete lack of sperm in the ejaculated semen. This is the second most common cause of male infertility and affects about one in every five infertile men, including men who have had a vasectomy but now wish to have more children.
C. Sperm antibodies: In some men, substances in the semen and/or blood called sperm antibodies can develop which can reduce sperm movement and block egg binding (where the sperm attaches to the egg) as is needed for fertilization. About one in every 16 infertile men has sperm antibodies.
D. Sexual problems: Difficulties with sexual intercourse, such as erection or ejaculation problems, can also stop couples from becoming pregnant.
E. Hormonal problems: Sometimes the pituitary gland does not send the right hormonal messages to the testes. This can cause both low testosterone levels and a failure of the testes to produce sperm.
F. Varicoceles; a normal enlargement of veins that drain the testicle, can cause infertility in men because the veins of the testes no longer moderate the temperature of the testicles correctly, and this can negatively affect sperm.