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Clinical case review

Male infertility – can it be caused by frequent hot spas?

Alan Wright

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Abstract

Find out what temperatures are harmful to sperm, and how long it takes for a new population of healthy sperm to emerge after transient damage.

Article Extract

A small increase in scrotal temperatures of 0.4°C is associated with infertility and an induced daily rise of 1°C could act as a potential contraceptive in men. However, the downregulation of spermatogenesis is inconsistent and unsafe for use as a male contraceptive technique.

Case scenario

Gavin is a 35-year-old married teacher at the local school. When he was 29 years of age, after two years of unsuccessfully trying to conceive with his wife of the same age, the couple underwent investigations and Gavin was found to have very few and very poor-quality sperm. His wife had no obvious fertility problems. They sought help from an IVF clinic and, with use of the technique intracytoplasmic sperm injection, became the proud parents of twin girls.

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