20 de October, 2023

Teratozoospermia and fertility

Fertilization with the ICSI method (intracytoplasmic sperm microinjection) offers higher success rates to patients with teratozoospermia, by selecting a normal sperm and injecting it directly into the egg.

What is Teratozoospermia?

Teratozoospermia or teratospermia is an increase in abnormal sperm in a man's semen.

This is diagnosed when the sperm with abnormal morphology exceeds 96% and compromises fertility because the majority of abnormal sperm are incapable of traveling to the egg and penetrating it.

Causes of Teratozoospermia?

Although we are not sure of all the reasons for teratozoospermia, certain factors can affect sperm quality, such as:

  • Mellitus diabetes
  • Varicocele
  • Vasectomy over 5 years
  • Seminal infections
  • Testicular problems
  • Trauma
  • Bad nutrition
  • Smoking
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol or other drugs such as cocaine or marijuana
  • Exposure to toxic agents such as insecticides
  • Age (the number of abnormal sperm increases after a man reaches 45 years of age)
  • Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy
  • febrile episodes
  • Prolonged exposure to heat in cars, saunas, or hot tubs

How is Teratozoospermia diagnosed?

It is diagnosed through a monogram or seminal fluid analysis. It is recommended that the man not have ejaculated between three and seven days before the analysis, but not for more than seven.

The morphology of the sperm is analyzed according to the WHO criteria, which establish that:

  • A healthy sample should have at least 4% sperm with normal morphology.
  • According to Kruger, a sample in which between 4 and 15% of the sperm are normal indicates moderate teratozoospermia.
  • A sample in which less than 4% of the sperm are normal indicates severe teratozoospermia.

To be considered normal, a sperm must consist of an oval head between 5 and 6 µm (micrometers) long and between 2.5 and 3.5 µm in diameter, a middle piece, and a tail or flagellum of around 50 µm in length.

Alternatives to having a baby at home when you suffer from teratozoospermia

Comprehensive fertility programs to have a baby at home when you have teratozoospermia include:

  1. Artificial insemination, in which the man's previously trained sperm are introduced into the woman's uterus just at the time of ovulation. This method is used to facilitate fertility in couples with moderate teratozoospermia and is only recommended when the woman is under 35 years of age.
  2. In Vitro Fertilization unites the egg and the highest quality sperm in a controlled environment, improving the chances of conception when the woman is over 35 years old and there is moderate teratozoospermia.
  3. Fertilization with the ICSI method (intracytoplasmic sperm microinjection), which consists of selecting a normal sperm and injecting it directly into the cytoplasm of a mature egg using a microscopic needle. This technique offers the highest pregnancy rates and is the best option for couples with severe teratozoospermia.

Living a healthy lifestyle is essential when treating teratozoospermia. In certain cases, this action can improve fertility. Those facing this condition are advised to consume essential amino acids, such as L-Carnitine, and antioxidants.

Do you want to know more about how to improve your reproductive health? Contact us and we will guide you!

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