Age Related Male Infertility and Decreased Sperm Quality
Many men believe that age is not important in fathering a child, but research shows that age related male infertility factors do exist. According to a study in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology involving men who were trying to start a family, pregnancy rates decrease by about 11% every year after age 40.
Sperm Quality and Aging
Unlike females, males remain fertile into their 50s, 60s and even 70s. Though assessments of older men’s sperm may fall within an acceptable range, we know that sperm quantity and sperm motility, or movement, may decline with age and contribute to age related male infertility.
Sperm quantity and motility are important factors for successful conception. The quantity of sperm in the ejaculate needs to be plentiful enough that a sufficient number of viable sperm can navigate through the vagina, across the cervix and uterus, and out into the fallopian tubes to fertilize an egg. Sperm motility is also very important. Sperm need to successfully propel themselves through the female reproductive system for fertilization to take place.
Research shows that sperm morphology, or the shape of sperm, also contributes to age related male infertility. Studies show that 60-year-old sperm is not genetically equal to 20-year-old sperm because the DNA in aging sperm cells can start to deteriorate when men are approximately 40 years of age. These genetic changes, or mutations, can contribute to an increase in the quantity of abnormal sperm in aging males.
Health Issues Can Contribute to Age Related Male Infertility
Our Ovation® andrologists assist in the diagnosis of age-related male infertility. Health issues that can cause infertility include erectile dysfunction in the aging male. Other medical conditions include diabetes, hypertension and depression.
If you are concerned about age related male infertility, our Ovation partner physicians can nationwide compassionately counsel and guide you.