Causes of Male Infertility

Identifying the causes of male infertility leads to a personalized treatment plan

Approximately 30% of infertility cases result from male factor infertility. In another 20% of cases, both the man and the woman present issues relating to infertility. Mark Rispler MD, our Los Angeles fertility specialist, provides clinical expertise and compassionate care to patients struggling with infertility, including discovering the common causes of male infertility. Once Dr. Rispler uncovers any obstacles to conception, he will work with you and your partner to create a treatment plan.

A comprehensive fertility evaluation can identify the causes of male infertility

The causes of male infertility may include irregularities in sperm production, function or delivery. Lifestyle choices, overall health and exposure to environmental toxins may also be responsible. Our Los Angeles fertility specialist offers the following explanations about the causes of male infertility.

Sperm abnormalities

Sperm must have the proper shape (morphology) and must move towards the egg (motility). If either, or both, of these requirements are impaired, the sperm will not be able to reach and fertilize an egg. A sperm concentration below 10 million per milliliter of semen is a low sperm count.

Testicular problems

A varicocele, which is a varicose vein in the scrotum that prevents sperm from developing properly, is another one of the causes of male infertility. Surgery can treat this problem.

Testicles that fail to descend from the abdomen into the scrotum during fetal development cause a higher internal body temperature, which may affect sperm production.

Additional causes of male infertility include blocked ejaculatory ducts and/or a lack of vas deferens (the tube that carries sperm from the testicle through the penis). Ejaculatory problems may involve retrograde ejaculation, when semen enters the bladder during orgasm rather than through the penis. Diabetes, certain medications and prostate or urinary issues can also create ejaculatory problems.

Hormone deficiency

Male hypogonadism, a condition where the body does not produce enough testosterone, occurs because of an abnormal hypothalamus or pituitary gland. Because these parts of the brain produce hormones that control the testicles and sperm production, male fertility can be affected.

Hypospadias

As a result of a birth defect, the urinary opening is located underneath the penis. If it is not corrected with surgery, hypospadias can reduce the chance of the sperm reaching the cervix, and ultimately the egg.

Overall health

Stress and emotional health can affect optimal sperm production and contribute to the causes of male infertility. General nutritional health and weight can also affect fertility. Diets deficient in the nutrients that are important for sperm production, including vitamin C, zinc and folic acid, can reduce the number of healthy sperm. Obesity may also result in lower sperm production.

Dr. Rispler wants to make the fertility treatment process easier on you by diagnosing the common causes of male infertility. Our Los Angeles fertility specialist will serve as a trusted partner to assist you in achieving a healthy pregnancy. Contact us to schedule a consultation.