Male Infertility Treatments
Nonsurgical Treatments for Male Infertility
There is increasing evidence that lifestyle can have a large impact upon male fertility. For example, weight loss and regular exercise can have a direct, positive effect on hormone levels and sperm production. Quitting smoking, including tobacco and marijuana, can have similar effects.
Medical therapies can be very effective for men with certain causes of infertility, such as hormonal abnormalities. For men with low testosterone, a number of medications, such as clomiphene citrate, human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) and anastrozole, can help to boost the body’s natural production of testosterone.
Testosterone supplementation through gels, injections or other methods can have a negative effect on fertility. These supplements can signal to a man’s body that it should stop its own production of testosterone, which can be bad for sperm production. In fact, testosterone supplementation can have such a negative impact on fertility that scientists have studied the possibility of using testosterone as a male contraceptive.
Surgical Treatment for Male Infertility
For men who do not have any sperm in their ejaculate, sperm extraction may be an appropriate option. During this procedure, a surgical microscope is used to open the testicle and extract sperm, if they are present. These sperm can then be used to fertilize an egg through in vitro fertilization (IVF).
Men who have had a vasectomy have a blockage that does not allow sperm in the ejaculate. Vasectomy reversal is a good option for these men. Using a surgical microscope, the two ends of the vas deferens are repaired using very small sutures the size of a human hair. If the reversal is successful, men may be able to conceive naturally with their partner.
Varicocele Repair or Varicocelectomy
Varicocele is the condition of varicose veins surrounding the testicle. When these veins become enlarged, they trap blood around the testicle, which can damage sperm through heat and other mechanisms. For men with this condition, we can perform a microsurgical procedure to ligate the enlarged veins, which can lead to healthier semen and even the possibility of natural conception as soon as three months after the procedure.
Transurethral Resection of the Ejaculatory Duct (TURED)
Some men with infertility may have a blockage in the prostate or ejaculatory duct. Using a small camera through the urethra, a number of techniques can be used to open the obstruction and restore the path for semen to exit the body.