OJOG  Vol.4 No.15 , November 2014
Obesity Appears to Impact Male Fertility by Degrading Overall Semen Quality Rather than Individual Semen Parameters
Obesity has become a well-recognized medical issue. However its exact role in male infertility remains unclear. The objective of the current study was to determine if an increase inBMIis associated with an increase in semen parameter abnormalities and if this relationship was influenced by other patient activities. Charts were reviewed for one hundred and thirty-three male patients who had also undergone a complete initial office face to face interview, as part of an infertility evaluation and a semen analysis. As part of standard patient care, all patients answered a detailed questionnaire regarding demographics, exposures, medical and reproductive history as part of their infertility evaluation. Patients were grouped according toBMIas normal (20 - 24 kg/m2), overweight (25 - 30 kg/m2), or obese (>30 kg/m2). Semen analysis parameters analyzed included: morphology, volume, concentration, percent motility, and agglutination. While some parameters suggested trends, results were similar between the normal, overweight, and obeseBMI, for concentration (P= 0.18), volume (P = 0.845), motility (P = 0.06); % Positive agglutination: 12%, 7%, 7% (P = 0.668) and % normal morphology (P = 0.083). Unlike a number of previous studies, results indicate that there is no statistically significant association betweenBMIand any of the individual semen parameters tested. Raw data suggested a trend for decreasing concentration with increasingBMI. Further, data also suggested equal numbers of oligospermics in each group. However, when the data looked at globally rather than on the effects on individually parameters (total number of normal motile sperm cells—NMS), functional sperm cells decreased with increasing BMI. None of these factors appeared to be affected by other patient factors. Collectively these data suggest that obesity has a multifactorial effect on male fertility; possibly due to relationships with the hormone cascade, body composition and potentially testis temperature regulation. Further study will be needed to confirm such relationships.

Cite this paper
Petty, J. , Jabara, S. , Prien, S. , Penrose, L. (2014) Obesity Appears to Impact Male Fertility by Degrading Overall Semen Quality Rather than Individual Semen Parameters. Open Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 4, 917-923. doi: 10.4236/ojog.2014.415129.
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