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All Posts in Category: Men

Vasectomy Reversal

When the vas deferens is divided at the time of vasectomy, sperm continue to be produced in the testicles on each side. Most of this sperm is either reabsorbed by the body or accumulates in the epididymis, the small gland located behind each testicle where sperm normally mature and gain the ability to swim.

The epididymis is a very fine, single tube that is prone to blockage when a long time interval has occurred between vasectomy and vasectomy reversal.

There are two possible operations that should be offered to complete a successful vasectomy reversal. Both operations are performed through small incisions in the scrotal area. The decision for which procedure to do will be decided at the time of surgery when the present fluid at the testicular side of the vasectomy site in the vas tube is examined.

Two Possible Operations

If there are sperm present at this site, a two-layer, microsurgical connection of the two ends of the vas will be performed. This is known as a vasovasostomy. If there are no sperm present, that means obstruction to the sperm flow has occurred in the epididymis. In this instance, a standard vasovasostomy will not be successful and the second option of surgery will be performed.

The second option of surgery consists of connecting the vas tubes to the epididymal tube in a location close to the testicle, thereby passing the blocked site in the epididymal tube. This is known as an epididymovasostomy.

As mentioned above the decision to perform which operation is made at the time of surgery. However, there are some factors that can help predict which operation will be necessary.

Here are some factors that would favor the ability to perform a vasovasostomy:

  1. Time from vasectomy < 10 years
  2. Vasectomy performed higher in the scrotum away from the epididymis
  3. The presence of a small “pea-sized” lump at the vasectomy area


It should be noted that the findings at the time of surgery may not be the same on each side. This means that it may be possible for a vasovasostomy on one side and an epididymovasostomy on the other side.

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How Health Affects Male Fertility

How Health Affects Male Fertility


Male fertility can be affected by your lifestyle.  If you have a healthy lifestyle, you are more likely to have healthy sperm.  Smoking, sexually transmitted diseases, alcohol, and your weight can also affect male fertility. To improve your chances of conceiving a child, make lifestyle changes and commit to living a healthy lifestyle.


Sexually transmitted diseases such as chlamydia and gonorrhea can be a cause for infertility.  To limit your exposure to these diseases, it is important for you to limit your sexual partners, practice safe sex, and commit to a monogamous relationship. Regular use of marijuana, tobacco, and illegal drugs can reduce the quality of your sperm and lead to abnormalities.  Stay clear of illegitimate drugs. Such as tobacco, medical marijuana can certainly reduce sperm movement along with result in sperm for being misshapen. Cocaine along with heroin furthermore obstruct healthy sperm.  Heavy alcohol consumption adversely affects male fertility.  Alcohol in moderation is fine but regularly consuming large quantities can significantly limit the quality and the quantity of your sperm.


Studies have found that lubricants such as KY Jelly and Astroglide can inhibit sperm movement and kill sperm.  If you are trying to conceive, it is best to stay from popular lubricants as well as using saliva as a lubricant.  If you must use a lubricant, try to use  Pre-Seed Intimate Moisturizer which is “sperm friendly.”  This product was developed for couples who are trying to conceive but may be experiencing vaginal dryness and not harm the sperm.


Adopting a healthy diet is another factor important to male fertility.  Studies have shown that being overweight influences the quality of your sperm and decreases sperm count.  To maximize male fertility and sperm health, consume a balanced and healthy diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and one that is rich in antioxidants.  When it comes to fertility, a healthy diet is just as important for men as it is for women.


When trying to conceive, men should avoid hot tubs, hot baths, and saunas.  Spending a significant amount of time in hot tubs, saunas, and hot baths with temperatures over 100 degrees can affect the number of normal sperm, interfere with sperm production, and increase the amount of abnormal sperm.  You should also avoid wearing tight clothing and use a mini-laptop desk instead of your lap when using your laptop computer.


Lastly, male fertility can be hampered by prescription medications.  Anabolic steroids can suppress testosterone, limit male fertility, and also cause harm to the male reproductive system which can lead to irreparable damage.  If you are taking prescription medication, it is advised that you speak with your physician and discuss if your medication may cause fertility issues. Prescription medications including antidepressants, antihypertensives, and antibiotics can inhibit sperm production.   If male fertility may be compromised due to prescription medication, discuss alternatives and let your doctor know that it is important for you to protect your fertility.  Also, prescription medication can affect your libido and cause you to lose interest in sexual relations with your partner.  Men who are undergoing chemotherapy and radiation should consider freezing their sperm because cancer treatment can cause damage to sperm cells.  If you have not yet started chemotherapy and radiation, your sperm can be frozen and preserved for future use.




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How Lifestyle Changes Can Affect Your Fertility

You already know that living a healthy lifestyle is important to your overall health. What you may not know is that it is also very important to your fertility.


Several factors can affect the quality of sperm and have an impact on fertility. Poor lifestyle choices can lead to issues with fertility so it is important to take a good, hard look at your drinking, smoking, and other habits and make changes if these can potentially be a barrier to you and your partner conceiving a child.

If poor lifestyle choices are affecting your fertility, now is the time to change bad habits and start making healthy choices.

Below are some lifestyle factors that may be hampering your ability to conceive a child:

Smoking: Smoking can have a negative impact on fertility causing a decrease in the quality of your sperm. Smoking tobacco damages your sperm cells and decreases sperm size and movement. It may also negatively affect your semen. If you are trying to conceive, consider talking to your health care professional about ways to quit smoking.

Stress:   Infertility can be discouraging as well as stressful and the amount of sperm you produce may decrease if you experience excessive or prolonged periods of emotional stress. Stress can also lower your sex drive and make you less inclined to have sex further making it difficult for couples to conceive.

Obesity:  Being overweight or obese is associated with male infertility and can lead to the quality and quantity of your sperm being lowered. It is important to maintain a healthy weight, eat a balanced diet, and incorporate physical activity into your regular routine. By doing so, you can keep your sperm in good condition and increase your chances of conceiving with your partner.

Alcohol: Heavy drinking on a regular basis is harmful to sperm and can decrease sperm production. Studies have shown that men who drink heavily and regularly have lowered sperm counts and testosterone levels. Alcohol can also cause impotence by decreasing the blood flow to your penis and damaging the nervous system making it impossible to have an erection.

Drug Use: Marijuana decreases the number and quality of your sperm and decreases average sperm count as well as sperm motility and normal morphology (size and shape) of sperm. Some studies have concluded that marijuana use has a more negative impact on sperm production than other lifestyle choices such as smoking and drinking. Cocaine has been known to have a significant impact on fertility. Regular use of cocaine can lower sperm counts, motility, and leads to a substantial increase in the amount of abnormal sperm. Anabolic Steroid use is pervasive in our culture and can have long lasting effects on male fertility. Steroids severely damage the sperm and the sperm that is produced is much less active than normal. Even more troubling is that sperm production is virtually stopped when using steroids, making it impossible for users to get their partners pregnant.

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