Who needs a sperm test?
When we say sperm test we are talking semen analysis and DNA fragmentation test. You may not always need both but often together they give a comprehensive overview of a man's fertility.
A semen analysis is a test of the production of good numbers of healthy, motile sperm in the ejaculate. It looks at the number, the motility and the morphology (the shape).
A DNA fragmentation test assesses the quality of the sperm at a genetic level. The test shows the level of fragmentation of the DNA within the sperm. It has been shown that high levels of fragmentation are associated with lower fertility. Understanding the cause of high levels of fragmentation and looking to treat this can improve a man's fertility hugely.
Other tests which are routinely conducted on sperm include pH test and white cell count (infection can impact fertility).
When should you have a semen analysis?
We would recommend a semen analysis to anyone who is trying for a baby especially if you have been trying for over 6 months, the female partner is over 30 or you are considering IVF or other fertility treatment. See why here.
When should you have a DNA fragmentation test?
Fertility Solutions recommend a DNA fragmentation test for anyone who:
- Has been trying to conceive for one year,
- Is considering IVF or other fertility treatment
- Has been unsuccessful with IVF treatment
- Has suffered a miscarriage.
Problems with low sperm count are not uncommon, in fact research suggests that around 1 in 3 couples that are struggling with fertility are affected by either low sperm count or poor sperm quality. If you and your partner have been struggling to get pregnant for 1 year or more it is a good idea to both have some fertility investigations. Fertility is 50/50 – it takes two to get pregnant and 50% of fertility problems lie with the man!