A medical condition known as azoospermia can affect a man’s fertility. This condition can impact a man’s ability to conceive, but there is potential treatment options to help prevent this.
Azoospermia occurs when seminal fluid (the liquid substance that transports sperm) contains little and sometimes no sperm. Researchers estimate that one percent of all men are afflicted with this reproductive malady, and roughly 10 to 15 percent of men struggling with infertility problems are diagnosed with this ailment.
Medical professionals opine that there are three distinct types of azoospermia. The first category is pre-testicular, meaning that the precipitating factor inhibits the ability of the testicles to produce sperm. Testicular causes are another underlying factor in the development of this disease. These issues are attributed to any disorder, malfunction or damage that adversely impacts the structure or function of the testes. The third kind of azoospermia is categorized as a post-testicular problem. In this type, sperm is prevented from being transported into seminal fluid.
The specific cause often depends on the type of azoospermia. Pre-testicular causes are typically precipitated by hormonal deficiencies that prevent normal systemic sperm production. Testicular causes could be the result of numerous diseases, medications, surgical complications, testicular injuries or malformations. Post-testicular azoospermia is caused by ejaculation difficulties or some type of obstruction within the reproductive tract that hampers the joining of sperm and seminal fluid.
The physical manifestations experienced by those stricken with azoospermia could depend on the specific underlying cause. However, the major symptom of the ailment is the inability to conceive. Reproductive experts opine that men experiencing infertility problems for more than one year of routinely attempting to conceive might be stricken with the condition.
Azoospermia and Fertility
Regardless of the type or underlying precipitators, azoospermia can be a serious threat to a couple hoping to conceive children. Medical and reproductive professionals opine that men with low sperm counts or conception problems should be evaluated for the condition as soon as possible. In certain instances, delaying diagnosis could further threaten or possibly eliminate the couple’s chances of conceiving altogether.
Diagnosis of this condition could take some time. Azoospermia is typically confirmed only following a thorough physical examination, which might include reproductive system tests, reproductive organ biopsies, blood tests, a comprehensive study of the patient’s history of medication and substance use (e.g., alcohol, marijuana and tobacco), genetic testing and hormonal production and systemic concentration measurements.
Potential Treatment Options
Treatment will hinge on the type of azoospermia diagnosed, in addition to the condition’s specific underlying causes. Should the ailment be precipitated by an illness, established therapeutic protocols will likely be employed. The remedial endeavors will be dictated by other factors like the patient’s age, overall health and severity of the underlying problem. Specific treatments could range from natural home remedies to medications and surgical intervention.
In the case of reproductive tract obstruction, clearing the blockage using drugs or surgical procedures might prove successful. Should the condition be precipitated by testicular or other reproductive-tract damage, assisted insemination techniques like in-vitro fertilization (IVF) might prove beneficial.