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How Do Genetics, Illness & Infection Affect Sperm?

Professor Allan Pacey explains how genetics and health issues can impact male fertility and the most common cases.


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0:02 There are many reasons why a man
0:06 maybe subvert I'll or he may have too few sperm in his ejaculate
0:11 you may be down to the size and and organization her
0:16 of his testicles the spoon production factory and that may be influenced by
0:21 many things it could be influenced by his genetics
0:25 it could be simply influenced by the way he grew during puberty or it could have
0:31 been influenced by a previous illness or infection
0:36 so for example mumps is very simple childhood infection and can be damaging
0:44 to the testicle
0:46 if it happened around the time of puberty or shortly after puberty
0:50 if a man's had previous treatment for cancer then the drugs that were given to
0:57 the man to combat that cancer can give permanent damage to the sperm production
1:02 factory there is almost certainly some genetic element to some men's
1:08 infertility and we know very little about that but there are some genes that
1:12 are associated with infertility
1:15 the most common gene that we are concerned about is that related to cystic fibrosis
1:21 so man who may be otherwise healthy and not have any evidence of cystic fibrosis
1:27 in them or their families could actually have a gene from that family that may
1:33 not give them symptoms of cystic fibrosis but may actually have affected
1:38 the way that they're and testicles all the associated tubes around the
1:42 testicles are made that may mean that fewer sperm or ejaculated than
1:47 ordinarily would be the case
1:49 so there are many different reasons for males of fertility and that may be why a
1:55 man may be asked to give a sample of blood
1:59 it may be wire man he's asked to be examined by the doctor and I always
2:04 recommend that a patient asked to be examined by their doctor if the doctor
2:08 doesn't volunteer to do that because there are many subtle things in testicles
2:13 that need to be looked at in order to exclude them, 
2:18 for example it may be that you have a cyst or a blockage
2:23 it may be that you have a small tumor in your testicles that needs to be looked
2:28 at for other reasons and it may only become too light at the time of your
2:32 infertility investigations
2:34 so going to the doctor and having the examination having a sperm test and
2:40 having all these blood tests performed is really part of the suite of things
2:45 that we would expect to happen at the time of infertility diagnosis