Low Sperm Counts and Abnormal Sperm Findings
As abnormalities in sperm production or function account for 35%-50% of all cases of infertility, male fertility testing is a key factor in determining a couple’s most effective fertility treatment.
A man’s low sperm count or abnormal sperm shape is first detected through a semen analysis. This test evaluates a single ejaculate sample for the total number of sperm (count), the concentration of sperm, percentage of moving sperm (motility), and the shape of the sperm (morphology). For most accurate results, the semen specimen should be collected following a two- to four-day period of abstinence. A shorter window of abstinence may artificially increase the concentration of sperm and the volume of semen, while a longer window may reduce sperm motility.
Fertility treatment should be sought when a semen analysis shows that a man has fewer than 39 million sperm per sample (oligospermia), less than 40% moving sperm (asthenospermia), or less than 4% normally shaped sperm (teratospermia).
Some men experience no indications of infertility while others only have slight signs. Because male infertility can easily go unnoticed, it is important to be evaluated by an expert to diagnose any issues requiring fertility treatment as soon as possible. The sooner an issue is diagnosed, the sooner we can begin a treatment plan.