Azoospermia Treatment (No Sperm Count)
What is Azoospermia?
Azoospermia is a condition in men where the sperm count in their ejaculation is non-existent. It occurs in 15% of all men, and among the infertile men, the average percentage of affected is 1%. This happens for many reasons, like hormonal problems, a block in the reproductive tract, testicular malfunction, or ejaculation issues.
As for treatment, there are some methods available, but it is not always easy to treat. Plus, in some cases, couples, or the affected men particularly, choose to have their one or few live sperms stored medically. This is later usable for assisted reproduction.
Causes of azoospermia
In the question of what causes, there are two main ways that Azoospermia befalls a person. One, it can occur because something causes a blockage in the tracts internally or externally. Second, it happens due to some condition that leaves a person infertile as a side-effect. This usually involves other medical conditions.
Both types are closely linked to the different versions of Azoospermia and are shared among males of different ages. The leading causes that fall under the two are as follows.
1. Obstructive –
This happens due to a blockage inside the epididymis, the vas deferens, or the ejaculatory ducts. This can appear due to an inflammation in the organs or because of injury to such areas. Infections, too, can result in the loss of sperm count in ejaculation.
Plus, if you have had any surgery previously in the region, it can not work appropriately. Cysts inside of any of the three organs are another common cause of Azoospermia. A specific surgical procedure like vasectomy is another intentional reason for the loss of sperm count.
Another type of obstructive reason for Azoospermia is a gene mutation in cystic fibrosis. In this, there are visible deformities with the vas deferens due to thick secretions buildup. This blocks the semen from passing to the uterus of the female during sexual activities. Plus, in some instances of this, the vas deferens has not even formed.
2. Non-Obstructive –
There are specific reasons that fall under this type of obstruction, precisely due to problems in testicles, hormones, genes, or ejaculation. In the case of the last option, this is usually a characteristic of retrograde ejaculation.
The condition occurs when the semen passes onto the bladder instead of the expected direction. And in case of endocrine issues or hormonal problems as the reason behind Azoospermia, there are some particular reasons. These include disorders like hyperprolactinemia, hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, or androgen resistance.
Genetic mutations, too, fall under the non-obstructive reasons for infertility in men. Some of the main conditions under this are:
- Klinefelter’s syndrome– One of these syndromes is Klinefelter’s syndrome, where a man carries another X chromosome besides the normal chromosomes. Because of this, their genetic makeup turns into XXY instead of the regular XY. There are other effects of this besides infertility, specifically, the lack of maturity in the body and disinterest in sexual activities. Plus, they have issues with learning too.
- Kallmann syndrome– In this, Kallmann syndrome has a genetic disorder in the X chromosome that they inherited. If it is not treated in time, that can cause infertility in males.
- Y chromosome deletion– Another genetic cause of Azoospermia is Y chromosome loss. There is a section of genes inside of the male chromosome, Y, that produces the sperm. A person with this disorder does not have that in their body, which causes them to become infertile.
In terms of testicular reasons, the usual causes include not having testicles or testicles not managing to produce live sperm cells. The conditions are called Anorchia and Sertoli cell-only syndrome, respectively.
Plus, if your testicles have not entered the scrotum, i.e., a condition called Cryptorchidism causes Azoospermia. Another syndrome that causes this situation is Spermatogenic arrest, where the testicles produce sperm, but not mature ones.
Mumps orchitis is another form of the testicular cause of this condition, where the organ is inflamed since having mumps during late puberty. Tumors in the testicle and later radiation treatments also make a person infertile.
Plus, one may have problems with certain medications that cause the sperm count to deplete in the testicles. Other medical causes include problems like testicular torsion, kidney failure, cirrhosis, or diabetes. Varicocele, a condition of wide veins in the testicles, is another reason why Azoospermia occurs.
Different types of azoospermia
Of course, there are differences visible in what kind of Azoospermia a man has. What causes them and where it occurs are the main reasons behind this matter. This demarcation happens in three forms, and they are as follows.
- Testicular Azoospermia– If there is a problem in your testicles that can affect your sperm generation. This type of Azoospermia’s main characteristic is that it can occur due to cancer and its subsequent treatment. In case of a groin injury or reproduction tract infections, this is possible. Two common types of this are urethritis or epididymitis. An illness during one’s childhood can also cause one testicle to expand.
- Pretesticular Azoospermia– In this, you do not physically have any defects that would stop you from producing sperm. But due to conditions like chemotherapy treatment or lower hormone levels, your body cannot make this element. This is one of the rarer types of Azoospermia.
- Post-testicular Azoospermia- In this, your testicle is completely fine, and it can produce sperm as well. But due to specific reasons like tube blockage or other obstructions, it cannot go out. This happens when the semen gets out of the penis and enters the bladder instead. Among the patients suffering from Azoospermia, at least 40% of people have this particular version.
Treatment Options For Infertility
Couples at a certain point in time have the desire to conceive. Many studies have found that almost 85% of the couples successfully conceive within one year of trying.
Infertility assessments include various examinations as well as tests to find out the underlying reasons behind infertility.
In Vitro Fertilization, or IVF is a kind of fertilization where the eggs combine with sperm for fertilization outside the body.
Follicular study or follicular monitoring is the process through which the doctor watches the growth of this follicle from the beginning of the menstrual cycle to the time it is ready to release an egg.
Ovulation induction is mainly a to-the-point treatment where hormonal pills are used for resuming ovulation.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, which is also commonly known as ICSI is one of the common and most successful treatments for male fertility.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection is also known as IMSI is another procedure used during the time of IVF.
Stem Cell In IVF
In the whole world, around 8% to 12% of couples tend to get affected by the curse of infertility.
IUI, medically known as Intrauterine Insemination, is a simple form of fertility treatment.
Preimplantation Genetic Screening is a test that carefully examines the chromosomal material of an IVF or in-vitro fertilized egg before the process of implantation can begin.
Computer-Assisted Sperm Analysis or refers to a system where a complex electronic imaging system is used to visualize the sperm, while advanced software programs help measure the numerous individual parameters of said sperm.
Symptoms of azoospermia
This condition does not have specific symptoms only associated with it. The only surefire indication is infertility that the male partner has, which you would notice after trying to get pregnant for a long.
However, some particular reasons cause Azoospermia, and you would see symptoms of these causes occasionally. They are as follows.
- Little or no semen
- Painful urination
- Pain in the pelvic area
- Cloudy urine after you have sex
- Smaller or swollen testicles
- Delayed puberty
- The penis is smaller than normal
- Cannot get erect easily
- Low hair growth near male genitalia
- Bigger breasts
- Reduced sex drive
- Loss of muscular strength
The main diagnostic plan that would work with checking your sperm count is semen analysis. Your doctor will hold repeated tests between months of the interval if your first test shows zero semen. Usually, there are only two tests in total they judge.
After the initial testing, the doctors would do further testing to find the cause and prescribe a treatment plan accordingly. Some of these steps include the following.
- Physical examination of the testicles
- Checking your medical history in detail to see if you had STIs before or severe illnesses like mumps during your younger years.
- Blood tests to see testosterone and FSH levels, and also visibility of estrogen or prolactin levels.
- Biopsy of the testicles (only necessary in case the other tests are not successful)
- TRUS (transrectal ultrasound) to see abnormalities or blockages in the tract.
- Genetic testing and karyotype testing in case of inheritable diseases.
For the sake of a fuller evaluation, the female partner also needs an examination to rule out female infertility. Plus, this would help the doctors plan a cohesive treatment plan.
Treatment for azoospermia
Some treatment plans do work well in terms of treating No Sperm Count in male patients. In case of any obstructions in the tracts, surgery is the best treatment plan available.
Sperm retrieval is another treatment method for Azoospermia, or getting pregnant despite that. Doctors use a small need to take out sperm from the testicle and freeze it for later use through In-Vitro Fertilization.
In case one gets a testicular biopsy, the doctors would take out some sperms during that experience. This reduces the chances of a second surgery.
Medications, too, can treat Azoospermia in some cases, like retrograde ejaculation. The common hormonal drugs include Letrozole, Clomid, hCG injections, and FSH injections.
You can follow these given pointers if you want to prevent getting Azoospermia.
- Drinking less alcohol or quitting it entirely
- No smoking
- Maintaining a healthy diet
- Staying away from heated regions
- Lessening the exposure to toxins and radiations
Azoospermia side effects
One of the main side-effects of No Sperm Count is mainly emotion-based. They cannot conceive children or have other underlying issues that may pass on to future offsprings is disheartening. Having counseling sessions would help out in this situation for both the male and the female partners.
Many physical problems can occur as a result of Azoospermia. Often, these health issues are complicated to handle and can cause death.
The medications may lead to side effects like appetite loss, headaches, vomiting, nausea, allergies, liver problems, rashes, and irritability.
Hormonal drugs would give rise to depression, oily skin, body shape changes, and edema.
During surgery, one can suffer from extensive bleeding, infections, or injuries in the intestines, stomach, kidneys, or blood vessels.
How to treat azoospermia naturally?
Natural food products can help improve your health and also treat Azoospermia. It would be best if you ate a diet full of nutrient-rich whole foods. This would work favorably to improve the sperm count in one’s ejaculation naturally. People who are overweight, on the other hand, should go forward with some weight loss programs.
Eating loads of herbs would work to improve the production of sperm and balance hormones in men. In the case of non-obstructive Azoospermia not caused due to genetic anomalies, these are effective. Some of the most helpful herbs include cordyceps mushroom, American Ginseng root, Saw Palmetto berries, Tribulus aerial fruit and parts, seed and fruit of Schisandra, and Maca root.
You should consult regarding which are best for you with a specialist in herbal health care besides your regular doctor.
Diet for azoospermia patient
It is imperative to eat healthy when one has Azoospermia. It is essential to include whole-grain food in your diet, like whole-grain bread, pasta, rice, or cereal. Dairy products are also crucial for healthy sperm production, specifically cheese, yogurt, and low-fat milk.
Green leafy vegetables in orange and dark green colors and lots of fruits are also suitable for men. As for protein intake, one should favor fish, eggs, chicken, beans, and nuts. When you are planning this diet, you need to consult your doctor or dietitian. They would tell you the diet plan for each day and what servings of sweets, oils, and fats are acceptable.
Azoospermia treatment cost
The cost of treatment for Azoospermia varies based on the experts you contact, the medical facility’s state, and the area. In European and American countries, the costs of Azoospermia treatment are more hardcore and expensive.
As for India, the cost of this treatment varies between USD $600- $1000 (Rs. 43,000/- Rs. 75,000/-) on average. The rates are not the same everywhere, and one needs to do prior checking.
We Provide Holistic Azoospermia Treatment In Mumbai
Shree IVF Clinic’s team of Infertility is highly skilled in handling all cases of azoospermia in Mumbai. The team has performed numerous complicated surgeries for azoospermia, a recurring condition.
Dr. Jay Mehta is one of Mumbai’s best azoospermia specialists. He has 10 + years of experience handling cases related to obstetrics, gynecology, and infertility. Moreover, Dr. Jay Mehta is best known as one of the leading IVF doctors in Mumbai.
1. Which Doctor To Consult For Azoospermia
– If you have Azoospermia, you should consult a fertility specialist
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Aspermia results in complete lack of ejaculation in men, while azoospermia results in no sperm in the ejaculate
Azoospermia means there’s no sperm in a man’s after ejaculate. If you wish to have a family but have azoospermia, ART therapies may be able to help
Azoospermia is a condition in which a man’s ejaculate contains no sperm. It might be caused by an obstruction in the reproductive system, ejaculation issues, hormonal disorders, or structural or functional issues with the testicles.
Chemotherapy often causes azoospermia during treatment, but whether this persists after treatment is unknown. In certain cases, fertility may recover rapidly following cancer therapy.
Dr. Jay Mehta
Fertility and IVF Specialist
Dr. Jay Mehta is the Scientific Director of Shree IVF Clinic. He is a well-known Azoospermia doctor in Mumbai and also among a few doctors in the country who specializes in Embryology and Andrology.