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What You Should Expect From Your Male Fertility Test

Knowing What’s To Come Is One Of The Best Ways To Ease Nerves.

June 24, 2020
Anita Parrott

Your first time getting your fertility tested can be intimidating. Especially if you have no idea what to expect. The results of the tests done are ones that will have an immediate impact on your fertility journey, and your chances of having kids. That being said, it’s fair to say that the stakes are high no matter what your results turn out to be. The entire process can easily seem ambiguous and stressful, but hopefully, this article will be able to relieve a bit of that stress.

In this article we’re going to discuss:

  • How To Know If You’re Infertile
  • Types of Testing
  • How To Prepare Emotionally
Photo of a female doctor inspecting sperm samples.
Even the possibility of infertility can be scary, and daunting. This article is aimed to help guide you through the process, and also provide information so that you feel prepared for undergoing testing. 

How To Know If You’re Infertile

Signs to watch out for

Unfortunately, there are no obvious signs of male fertility. There are many causes for male infertility but to provide a more concentrated list of things to look out for, here are some ways you can anticipate infertility as a man. A good sign of infertility is if you and your partner haven’t been able to conceive after 12 months. If this happens it’s best to investigate both you and your partner’s fertility. 

In order to get a conclusive answer about your fertility, it requires medical testing. Male infertility can be caused by a myriad of underlying issues such as:

  • Lower levels of hormones in the pituitary glands
  • Problems with sperm delivery
  • Abnormal sperm function or production
  • Genetic predisposition

It’s best in these cases to consult a doctor or speak with a family planning clinic, to see which tests you should take. If you suspect that there may be some issue with your fertility it’s a good idea for you to act sooner rather than later to figure out what treatments would be most effective depending on your results.

Types Of Testing

What exactly will they be looking at?

Because there are so many causes of male infertility, there are also many different types of tests to help you rule out what it is that’s inhibiting conceiving. Whether it’s collecting a sperm sample, or drawing blood, it’s a good idea to know a bit about all of the possible testing methods, before you have to take them.

Sperm Analysis

Sperm analysis entails providing sperm samples and having experts examine the sample to determine any abnormalities. Sperm analyses are meant to assess the size, shape, mobility, count, and functioning of the sperm to figure out if that’s where the problem of infertility lies. Although this test can be very helpful in determining male infertility, it’s important to note that even if a man is found to have a low sperm count, oftentimes their sperm is still fertile. If the results of your sperm analysis come back as normal, it’s perfectly normal for your physician to order a second test just to be sure. 

Urinalysis

While a urinalysis is primarily meant to find infection by searching through your white blood cells, it can also be helpful in finding possible issues with your sperm. If there is any sperm present in your urine it can be a sign of a greater underlying issue known as retrograde ejaculation. Retrograde ejaculation is a condition that causes your semen to enter your bladder during ejaculation. The condition causes no harm but can have a great deal to do with infertility in men.

Hormone Evaluation

While hormones don’t contribute to infertility in 97% percent of all infertile men, if your doctor suggests this, or if you would like to be as thorough as possible, a hormone evaluation can certainly clear some things up. Testosterone and other hormones account for helping to produce sperm in the body, so if there does happen to be a problem, it could be what’s making conceiving difficult. 

Physical Exam

A physical exam involves going in and having a professional perform a scrotal examination to check for any abnormalities. Various problems account for male infertility that can be detected by a physical examination. Any variation from the normal size or feel of your genitals can be a sign of some form of dysfunction that may be contributing to your infertility. 

Genetic Test

It’s also completely possible that when your sperm concentration is low it could be the result of your genetics. Experts are able to take blood samples and determine whether there are changes in your Y chromosomes that may have been the cause of your inability to conceive.

Man looks at a wall covered with various test results.
With so many testing options and various causes, it can be very easy to get swept up in all of it and become a bit overwhelmed. It’s important to remember why it is that you’re going through this process. If you find a way to remind yourself of the end goal, and what conceiving a child of your own means to you, it can make the entire journey so much more worthwhile. 

How To Prepare Emotionally

Getting ready for the results

Sometimes the dread of anticipating bad news can feel just as bad or worse than receiving the bad news itself. It’s important to make yourself feel prepared for whatever results you receive, and sure that you’re aware of the worst-case scenario as well as the best to have more level expectations.

 If you do receive news of your infertility, your journey doesn’t necessarily end there! There are a number of treatments catered towards many different causes for male infertility. It’s important to try to reduce your stress as much as you can to improve your chances of conceiving, as well as your general wellbeing. Expressing your emotions to family or friends can also be a great way to manage what you’re going through, and to make sure that you’re coping in a way that’s conducive to your mental health.

It’s important to try to keep your hopes up. There are tons of options for various treatments, and if those don’t work out as planned, there are many other ways that you can bring children into your life. These decisions are ones that you and your partner have to make together, and perhaps through it all, the journey towards pregnancy that you embark on together will bring you closer to one another, regardless of the results. 



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