Are curious about understanding men and IVF? Infertility is not solely a women’s issue; therefore, it’s important for men to be included in discussions and informed.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), between 48 million couples and 186 million individuals live with infertility globally, and some studies have asserted that the “male factor” accounts for 40-50% of infertility. In men, infertility is most commonly caused by ejaculation problems, absence or low levels of sperm, or abnormal shape and movement of sperm. For men dealing with infertility issues, in vitro fertilization (IVF) may help.
What is IVF?
In vitro fertilization, is a fertility treatment in which eggs are removed from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized with sperm in a laboratory. The resulting embryos are then transferred to the uterus for implantation.
IVF can be used to treat a variety of fertility problems, including:
- Unexplained infertility
- Male factor infertility
- Ovulation disorders
How does IVF work?
During IVF, a woman is given medication to stimulate her ovaries to produce multiple eggs. Once the eggs mature, they are retrieved from your partner’s ovaries and fertilized with your sperm in a laboratory. As a result of fertilization, embryos are produced. Some embryos are kept frozen while one or two are transferred to your partner’s uterus, where they implant and grow. The number of embryos being transferred depends on things like your age. But your reproductive endocrinologist will determine how many are suitable prior to transfer day. For us, our RE only transferred one embryo, and would only transfer one. Why? Because fewer embryos transferred reduces the chance of multiple pregnancies and miscarriage. The end goal is to have a healthy pregnancy and baby.
My IVF Process: How We Got Our Rainbow Baby
Benefits of testing sperm
When it comes to fertility, most people think of women. But what about men? Sperm quality and quantity are just as important when it comes to conception. Up to 50% of infertility cases are caused by male factors. That’s why sperm testing is such an important part of fertility treatment. By identifying and treating any problems with sperm, you can improve your chances of conceiving a child.
Several tests can be performed on sperm. Each test is designed to assess a different aspect of sperm health. Let’s take a look at some of the most common tests:
- Sperm count: This test measures the number of sperm in a sample of semen. A normal sperm count is at least 20 million sperm per milliliter of semen.
- Sperm motility: This test measures how well sperm move; motile sperm are more likely to reach and fertilize an egg.
- Sperm morphology: This test assesses the shape and size of sperm. Normal sperm should be oval-shaped with a long tail. While abnormal sperm may have a different shape or are missing a tail.
Fertility testing for men is an important step in the fertility treatment process. By identifying any sperm problems, you and your doctor can develop a treatment plan that gives you the best chance of conceiving a child. Understanding the benefits go testing sperm can help you understand men and IVF a little more.
Benefits of sperm freezing
For couples that are not ready to have children, sperm freezing can be a great option. This allows the man to have his sperm frozen and stored until the couple is ready to conceive. There are many benefits of sperm freezing, which include:
- Sperm freezing can provide peace of mind for couples that are not ready to have children.
- It can allow couples to have children when they are older and more financially stable.
- Sperm freezing can give couples more time to prepare for parenthood.
- Freezing sperm can increase the chances of conception for couples with difficulty conceiving naturally.
- Sperm freezing is a safe and effective way to preserve fertility.
For men and IVF, sperm freezing can be a good solution.
Getting help for male-factor infertility
If you’re struggling to conceive, it’s important to seek help from a fertility specialist because they have the knowledge and tools to diagnose and treat fertility issues. Thankfully, fertility treatment has come a long way, and there are several treatments to help. Fertility treatments to help male-factor infertility include medication, surgery, and assisted reproductive technologies (ART), such as IVF. However, seeing a reproductive endocrinologist will help determine your best treatment course. Don’t lose hope – with the help of a fertility specialist, you can still achieve your dream of becoming a parent.
What to Look for When Searching for a Reproductive Endocrinologist
How to deal with infertility as a couple
Infertility can be a difficult and frustrating experience for any couple. If you or your partner are struggling with infertility, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. There are many resources and support groups available to help couples deal with infertility.
There are a few things you can do as a couple to help ease the stress of infertility:
- Communicate openly with each other. It’s important to talk about your feelings and frustrations with each other. This can help you both feel more connected and less isolated.
- Seek professional help. If you’re struggling to cope with infertility, consider seeking counseling or therapy from a mental health professional.
- Join a support group. There are many support groups available for couples dealing with infertility. This can be a great way to meet other couples who understand what you’re going through.
- Stay positive. It’s important to remember that there is hope. Many couples who struggle with infertility eventually go on to have healthy children.
- Seek medical help. If you’ve been trying to conceive for a year or more without success, it’s important to consult with a fertility specialist. They can help you determine the cause of your infertility and recommend treatment options.
If you or your partner are struggling with infertility, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. There are many resources available to help you cope with this difficult experience. Infertility is both a men’s and women’s issue, so hopefully, these tips helped you understand both sides.