Male fertility evaluation
-A step-by-step guide-
If you have a partner, he has to undergo a male fertility evaluation before you can do IVF. Male infertility is examined to analyze the volume, sperm count and motility of the sperm to find possible causes of infertility. Here we describe everything you need to know about how the fertility evaluation works.
Step 1: Andrological examination
The evaluation starts with meeting an andrologist (the male fertility evaluation is called “andrological examination”). You will answer questions about possible past illnesses, lifestyle and medication. You may also have to do a general physical examination.
Step 2: Semen analysis
A sperm sample analyzes the volume, sperm count and motility of the sperm. The sample should be freshly delivered, usually directly at a clinic where there is a separate room for the purpose. If you have difficulty taking the sample at the clinic, you can, if you live nearby, take the sample at home and then leave it at the clinic for analysis.
Before taking the sperm sample you must have had a period of ejaculatory abstinence for at least 2 and a maximum of 5 days. Instructions on the number of days may differ, so find out what applies to your particular clinic. In some cases, urine may be tested for the presence of sperm.
(Step 3: Ultrasound scan and blood test)
In some cases, an ultrasound scan of the testicles is also done. You may also have to take a blood test to check your level of testosterone and other male sex hormones.
(Step 4: More rarely performed examinations)
Other more rare examinations include genetic testing to see if there is a genetic defect causing infertility. In select cases a testicular biopsy is done to identify abnormalities that cause infertility.
What happens next?
When the clinic has analyzed the results of the evaluation, the underlying cause of infertility can be determined. This then forms the basis for which fertility treatment is most suitable to do.
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