STIs and Male Infertility

STIs, or Sexually Transmitted Infections, are more common than we may care to think. Especially the ones that show no evident symptoms affect people easily. Some of these may lead to male infertility.

Most of these STIs can either be treated easily or the symptoms can be managed with a regular course of medication. Before STIs start affecting your fertility, it is advisable to consult your doctor who can recommend a course of treatment.

STIs That Affect Male Fertility

Also, Read: Types of Infertility

Which are the common STIs that men should look out for? How do they affect fertility? Here is a look at some of the common STIs that are related to male infertility.

  • HIV

HIV infections affect a person’s immunity. If not managed in time, it could lead turn fatal. The virus can also affect the quality and quantity of sperm in a man. There is not enough concrete data on whether an infected father can pass on the infection to the offspring. However, the possibility can be avoided by seeking the right fertility treatment that may include sperm washing.

  • Syphilis

Like HIV, syphilis can also be passed on to sexual partners. It may also pass on from an infected mother to offspring. In some cases, it can lead to miscarriage. However, it is treatable, and the treatment is recommended for all partners involved. In men, the infection can cause complications that may affect fertility, even if no symptoms are seen. You can consult your doctor for tests.

  • Genital Herpes

Herpes virus infections cannot be fully treated. However, if you notice symptoms that include blisters, ulcers, scabs, or pain, itching, and tenderness in your genital area, consult your doctor. Treatment for the symptoms may be recommended. Genital herpes may result in a low sperm count, and can be passed from mother to child, where it may prove serious.

  • Hepatitis

Hepatitis can be sexually transmitted, and in some cases, it can prove life-threatening. It affects the liver and may cause damage to the organ, cirrhosis, and chronic liver disease. A hepatitis infection, especially HBV (hepatitis B virus) is seen to affect sperm health, especially count and motility. The virus is best prevented with a vaccination.

  • Chlamydia

Chlamydia can also affect sperm quality, and thus fertility in men. However, it is a treatable infection and help should be sought in the early stages before it causes much damage. If passed from an infected mother to child, it may end up causing eye infections especially in cases of vaginal delivery.

  • Gonorrhoea

Apart from genital areas, gonorrhoea can affect the throat, rectum, joints, and eyes. While an infection may not always translate into symptoms, it can lead to fertility issues in men. It causes conditions such as acute urethritis and semen quality deterioration. It is best to seek professional help if you notice symptoms, or if you are trying to become a parent.

Also, Read: IMSI Infertility Treatment

STIs can start small, often without symptoms. But if left unchecked, they could cause more damage. Not only will it harm your sexual partners, but prospective parents are also putting their fertility chances and the health of their child at risk. If you are trying to get pregnant, it is advisable to get tested for STIs.

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