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The single most important test of male fertility
What are they looking for?
The Factors Reported in a Semen Analysis
A semen analysis is usually done at a laboratory or a physician's office. The man masturbates and collects the ejaculate into a cup. The semen should then be examined within a few hours, to achieve the most accurate results. The following is evaluated:
2 5 milliliters is a normal volume. A very low volume indicates that the seminal vesicles may not be making enough fluid or that these ducts may be blocked. It may also indicate a problem with the prostate gland.
40 million to 300 million is the normal range for the number of sperm per milliliter. Counts below 10 million are considered poor; counts of 20 million or more may be fine if motility and morphology are normal.
Motility and Velocity
2 aspects of motility will be evaluated
At least 30% of cells should be of normal shape according to the WHO (world health organization)
Kruger (strict) morphology test
Examines the shape and size of the sperm head. Normal results are when 14% or more of the sperm have normal shaped heads. Men with less than 4% of normal shaped sperm may have a significant infertility problem.
Normal semen which is liquid at ejaculation immediately coagulates into a pearly gel that liquefies within 20 minutes. Failure to coagulate and then liquefy may indicate a problem with the seminal vesicles, as would increased thickness or the presence of white blood cells.
If no sperm are present, the semen will be tested for seminal fructose, normally produced by the seminal vesicles. If no fructose is present, congenital absence of the vas deferens or seminal vesicles or obstruction of the ejaculatory duct
The physician may test the semen and/or the urethra for the presence of ay STD's or other bacteria.