One of the first tests, we use, to determine if the male has a reproductive obstacle is semen analysis. It simply measures the amount of semen a man produces, determining the number and quality (concentration, motility, volume, structure) of sperm in the sample. It's a very helpful method to decide on the best form of treatment too.
For the most reliable test results, and to ensure the highest sperm count for our testing purposes, we advise you to avoid any sexual activity that results in ejaculation for 3 to 5 days beforehand.
The testing is discreet, and straightforward. At HARI, men are asked to produce a sample by masturbation into a sterile container. Samples are analysed within sixty minutes. Your results are sent either to your GP or filed in the patients chart to be discussed during consultation with a HARI clinician. It's important to remember that it's often necessary to obtain two samples for confirmation of a result.
In some cases where a patient may experience difficulty producing a semen sample as outlined above, alternative arrangements may be made.
A normal semen sample is reported as having:
- A count of 20 million/ml or greater
- A total motility of more than 50% with 35% being progressive
- A morphology of 4% or greater normal forms.
Some common terms used to describe sperm parameters are:
- Normozoospermia: Normal Profile
- Oligozoospermia: Low sperm count <20 million / ml
- Asthenozoospermia: Reduced motility < 50%
- Teratozoospermia: Abnormal morphology ( Sperm Structure)
- Azoospermia: No Sperm present in the ejaculate
Azoospermia does not necessarily mean that the man is not producing sperm. There are plenty of treatable factors to consider: blockage, recent illness, medication or other hormonal problems. Once identified, HARI will request a second sample to confirm the azoospermia. If confirmed, we recommend speaking with one of our team to investigate the possible causes.