A semen analysis precisely examines the volume and quality of a man’s sperm, which is considered one of the initial steps to finding male fertility complications. Along with detecting various factors of infertility in men, this test also helps to determine whether a vasectomy was successful or not.
Therefore, it is vital to conclude that semen analysis is one of the core factors in comprehending reproductive hindrances, especially when you fail to conceive and look for male infertility treatment. But before going further, let’s dive in and identify how semen analysis is acknowledged as a breakthrough point in male infertility treatments.
Semen: An Overview
Semen is a thick, white fluid substance released from a man’s penis during ejaculation that carries sperm. It contains
Sperm: These are male reproductive cells; each cell has a distinct shape. It includes a head (which contains genetic material such as DNA to fertilize a woman’s egg) and a tail (which assists the sperm in traveling through a woman’s reproductive system to fertilize the egg).
Fluid: It makes it feasible for sperm to incline toward the back of a woman’s vagina. As the area is nearer to the cervix (the opening of the uterus where a fetus develops).
Booster: Protein, vitamins, and minerals work as a booster to add fuel to the sperm’s journey to the egg.
Importance of Semen Analysis
A semen analysis is a well-known lab test that inspects a sample of semen under a microscope, and it estimates sperm count, motility, and morphology.
The semen analysis test is used to diagnose the causes of male infertility in various male fertility treatments, such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI). In normal conditions, two to three different sperm analysis tests are conducted to get a detailed examination of the sperm’s health. Ideally, the semen analysis test is performed at least seven days apart and over two to three months to give the most definitive test results.
Semen Analysis Test: Fits to whom?
There can be endless reasons your doctor prescribes you to go for a semen analysis test. However, the common reasons are:
Male infertility: If you have been failing to conceive or it has been very difficult for you to try, it may be due to a semen abnormality. Issues with a man’s sperm have become popular due to deficient reproductive health, a degrading environment, and a poor lifestyle. Thus, a semen analysis indicates the possibility of a man having trouble conceiving naturally.
Follow-up of Vasectomy: A semen analysis also helps to dictate whether a vasectomy (also known as permanent contraception) was successful. This procedure blocks the tube that deposits sperm in the semen. Thus, if the sperm are not found in the semen, the vasectomy process shows that it worked, and a man cannot conceive with a female.
Reasons to go for semen analysis:
Suppose a man fails to conceive or get his partner pregnant naturally, even after more than a year of unprotected intercourse; In that case, the doctor may recommend going for a semen analysis test. Also, it is performed in addition to a female infertility test. The semen analysis informs us about various pivotal things regarding semen and sperm. It includes:
Sperm Morphology: It is well-known that the shape and anatomy of the sperm play a crucial role in fertility. Also, research says that more than 50 percent of abnormally shaped sperm lower fertility percentages to a greater extent. Along with that, it also shows the possibility of immature sperm, which fails to fertilize an egg effectively.
Sperm Count: This is known as the number of sperm per milliliter. The absolute sperm count in the semen analysis ranges from 20 million to 200 million. A lower sperm count than the given figure makes it almost impossible to conceive.
Sperm Motility: The potential of sperm to swim is accurately termed “sperm motility.” It is essential to fertility because it enables sperm to travel to fertilize an egg
Semen Volume: The percentage of semen present when a man ejaculate has a vital impact on his ability to get his partner pregnant. Prominently, an average percentage should be greater than 2 milliliters; lower than that can cause male infertility.
Fructose Level: Fructose is a sugar in the semen that helps nourish and give energy to the sperm. Thus, low fructose levels can affect the viability of the sperm.
Semen pH: Any difficulty with the acidity or alkalinity of the semen can negatively impact the sperm’s health.
pH Level: The ideal pH level should range between 7.2 to 7.8. A level lower or higher than the given number indicates the specimen is contaminated or infected.
Appearance: The semen should be whitish to grey and exhibit a milky iridescence. The presence of blood in the appearance might indicate the presence of blood, while a yellow tint could reflect jaundice or a side effect of medication.
Liquefaction Time: After the ejaculation of 20 minutes, semen eventually turns into liquid. However, because the absolute liquefaction time appears to help move a sperm, the inability of the sperm to liquefy within 15 to 30 minutes leads to male infertility.
What do the abnormal results indicate?
The abnormal sperm analysis results might indicate the following:
- Hormonal Imbalance
- Male Infertility
- Gene defects
- Exposure to radiation
- Chronic diseases such as diabetes
After the test is performed, the semen is analyzed, and a report is made, an IVF specialist will look into the matter more carefully and prepare for personalized treatment.
Male Infertility Treatments
A fertility specialist will study a detailed report of your reproductive health and suggest you change your lifestyle by wearing not-too-tight underpants and following an optimized diet to balance your pH levels. Along with that, you might be asked to cut down on the consumption of alcohol, smoke, caffeine, and illicit drugs.
However, These lifestyle changes are only helpful to an extent. In severe cases, getting an IVF or IUI treatment is suggested. Both are kinds of Assisted Reproductive Technology treatments that signifies:
In-vitro Fertilization: It is the most popular ART form and is widely accepted. IVF is a fertilization process where an egg and a sperm combine in-vitro (outside the human body in a modern laboratory). It is a long process primarily performed to treat infertility in men and women.
Intra-uterine Insemination: Also known as artificial insemination, IUI is one of the procedures to treat male infertility. In this process, extracted sperm is washed and concentrated to directly place into the woman’s uterus to fertilize an egg.
Intra-cytoplasmic sperm infection: ICSI is famous for being an effective treatment for treating male infertility. It is a further assistance to IVF, in that sperm is injected manually with the help of a needle into the centre of an egg to make it fertilize.
Donor Programme: In some severe cases, a sperm donor is recommended to plan for a baby.
An insightful semen analysis provides a range of information that can be a game-changing factor in determining male fertility factors. Thus a semen analysis helps to guide the complications a man faces to conceive naturally so that a beneficial treatment can be planned according to one’s reproductive health.
Henceforth, it is necessary to consult a fertility specialist to get male infertility treatment in India. You can consider the best IVF center, Crysta IVF, for all your fertility treatments. We work with cutting-edge technology, modern ART labs, and top-notch IVF doctors to enhance fertility chances and help couples plan for a baby.