Impaired Sperm Production

Causes of low sperm count include:

1. Hormonal imbalances:Hormones produced by the pituitary gland are responsible for stimulating the testicles to make sperm. Therefore, when levels are severely low, poor sperm development can result.

2. Testicular abnormalities:

a. Varicoceles: 40 percent of infertile males suffer form varicocele which is condition characterized by enlarged scrotal veins which is clearly visisble during physical examinsation. This restricts normal blood flow there by imparing the development of sperms

b. Cryptorchidism: Before birth the testes descends from the abdominal cavity into the scotum. If this doesnot occur then the resulting condition is called Cryptorchidism. Since the testes are very sensitive to temperature, if they do not descend into the scrotum prior to adolescence, then they will stop producing sperm altogether.

3. Infections: Sperm production process occurs in stages each stage taking place in a different part of the male reproductive tract. Sperms are formed in the testis, they are stored in epididymis where they undergo partial maturation, further down the tract, and Sperms are mixed with secretions of accessory glands in the prostatic duct. These secretions form a bulk of the seminal fluid which play an important role in keeping the sperm viable, motile and achieve the final maturation once inside the female reproductive tract. Therefore infections in any part of the male reproductive tract negatively affect the sperm production and sperm function. These may include infections of the prostate (prostatitis), of the epididymis (epididymitis), or of the testis (orchitis). Post-pubertal viral infections of the testes may cause significant damage (atrophy) of the testes and may cause absolute and irreversible infertility.