Why have a sperm analysis?
Sperm is the key to conception from the
side of the male partner. For this reason, a sperm analysis
is the test required to determine the male's fertility.
Some men find it emotionally trying to
have a sperm analysis. As there are no symptoms or early
indicators of male factor infertility - low sperm count,
poor morphology, low or no motility - waiting for the
results can prove to be unnerving.
Despite this fact, a sperm test is painless
and, if a problem is found, it can save a woman months
of unnecessary testing. It is highly recommended that
the man have a sperm analysis as part of the original
infertility testing process (infertility workup).
Once the results are received, an additional
task is to understand them.
How do you prepare for a sperm analysis
and how is it done?
Your doctor will usually recommend that
you abstain from sexual activity (including masturbation)
for at least 2 days before having a sperm analysis.
Sperm concentration is affected by sexual activity,
so, in order to provide a good sample, it's best to
The lab (or your doctor) provides a cup
into which the man ejaculates. Sometimes this can be
done at home and sometimes it needs to be done closer
to the lab. Sperm samples should arrive at the lab within
A few tips:
- Be sure hands and penis are cleaned prior to collection.
- Don't use any lubricant, including saliva
- Don't collect the specimen in a condom, unless the
laboratory has provided you with a special semen collection
- Don't touch the inside of the cup
- If any semen spills, don't transfer it to the cup
What do the results of the semen
The results give a fairly good indication
as to the status of a man's fertility. The normal values
appear in the table below.
one or more parameters of the results is not within
the normal, it is recommended to repeat the test
several weeks later.
Sperm is continually produced in the testes.
Its production is affected by health (e.g., fever),
nutrition, stress and other factors, and it takes
about 2-1/2 months until the sperm matures. For
this reason, a single poor sperm test
may not be a true indication of the man's fertility.
Values for Semen Analysis:
Concentration: >20 million/ml
Total Cells: >40 million
Normal Forms: >14%
Additional factors that may appear on
your test include:
White & red blood cell counts
- If these are abnormally high, antibiotics may be recommended.
Semen Viscosity - Coagulated
sperm should liquefy within an hour. If it does not,
will solve the problem.
Sperm Agglutination - Sperm that "clump
together". This may be a sign of antisperm antibodies
- when your own body mistakes your sperm as an external
organism. Sperm agglutination can also be caused by
We recommend the following pages for more information:
Information and Stories about
The lighter side... I'd
like to make a deposit please by Frank N Beans (a
Formula for Male Infertility
Two home tests are available. The first is less expensive and tests only sperm concentration
Male Fertility Sperm Test. The second tests both sperm count and sperm motility is the Micra
Sperm Test. Both are performed in the privacy of your
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