An estimated 25% of pregnancies result in a miscarriage (American Pregnancy Association). There are many possible causes of a lost pregnancy, amongst them are issues with sperm quality. While IVF is the appropriate treatment for those who cannot conceive otherwise, it’s not always successful. While it is true that there are many reasons for an IVF cycle to fail, one of them that is frequently overlooked is poor sperm quality.
At Posterity Health, we strive to bring equity to fertility as one of the only digital male fertility clinics in the U.S. During a Recurrent Pregnancy Loss consult with our reproductive urologists, we will closely examine your sperm quality and fertility health.
Here are just a few of the common male factors that we assess.
1. DNA Fragmentation
One of the contributing male factors to RPL is sperm DNA fragmentation (SDF). DNA fragmentation refers to abnormal genetic material within the sperm and can lead to genetic abnormalities within the embryo, which can decrease pregnancy rates and increase the chance of having a miscarriage. Many factors can cause DNA fragmentation in sperm, such as certain lifestyle and behavioral factors, aging, environmental pollutants, presence of a varicocele and more.
It should come as no surprise that SDF is correlated to lower fertility in males. However, research has shown that sperm DNA fragmentation is also linked closely to recurrent pregnancy loss.
At Posterity Health, we can evaluate your sperm for DNA fragmentation through advanced testing systems, like the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA).
2. Sperm Morphology
The size and shape of your sperm — also called sperm morphology — can also contribute to RPL. Studies have shown that fewer morphologically normal sperm are present in samples provided by RPL patients. IVF studies have also shown an association between embryo failure at an early stage and abnormal sperm morphology.
For a healthy pregnancy, it’s important to understand your own sperm morphology and if you need to seek treatment. At Posterity Health, we will properly assess your sperm morphology and develop recommendations on how to improve it, if needed.
You’ve likely heard about the varicose veins that some people can get in their legs. Varicocele is a similar condition, with dilated veins coming from the testicle, which may affect male fertility.
Varicocele occurs when blood vessels in the testicles enlarge, causing them to become swollen and painful.
Varicocele can be diagnosed via a physical exam, which is included in our RPL consult. If left untreated, varicocele can cause infertility and may directly contribute to RPL.
4. Lifestyle Choices
Use of tobacco products, marijuana, alcohol in excess and obesity are all associated with poor sperm production.
Schedule Your Consultation for Recurrent Pregnancy Loss
At Posterity Health, our goal is simple: we want you to have a happy and healthy baby. If you’ve experienced consecutive miscarriages, or failed IVF cycles we can help you get the answers you need.
Our RPL consultation is entirely focused on assessing the fertility of the male partner. We will conduct an in-depth review of your medical history, a comprehensive evaluation of your sperm health, and more to help you achieve a successful pregnancy.
Don’t let recurrent losses get in the way of your happiness. Schedule a FREE 10-minute call with Posterity Health to learn more about recurrent pregnancy loss.