Male testing - Sperm: Here’s the down-low

Sperm testing informationSo here’s the thing. We know that 40% of problems that couples have conceiving will be male factor related. Yet we also know that when it becomes evident to a couple that they are not having any luck conceiving naturally, more often than not (much more often in fact), it will be the female who will reach out first for help and who will undertake a battery of tests; from the simple blood tests through to a few more invasive tests.

But did you know, a simple sperm test could save your partner many of these procedures, and both of you a lot of time? In fact, a semen analysis should be one of the very first investigations undertaken to identify causes of infertility. And let’s face it; giving a sample is hardly an arduous process. Sure there may be a tinge of embarrassment, many questions and even concern, but we want to let you know - this is perfectly normal!  In fact, many of the things you are probably questioning in your head, or are concerned about, have been asked multiple times by men just like you.

Let’s shoot from the hip

We guys are a proud lot; we hate to ask questions. So to save you needing to ask, we’ve compiled a few facts and answers below which will put your mind at ease. This is part one and we’ll share part two next week.

Where can I collect my sample?

In short, as soon as you ejaculate, the sperm in your sample begins to deteriorate. Our recommendation is to collect your sample in one of our private rooms at Genea so our scientists can start to analyse it immediately. However, we know this is not always possible, nor comfortable for some, so there is an option to collect at home. If you do this you will need to:

  • Use a sterile container provided by our Andrology labs.
  • Collect all the ejaculate in the container and seal it immediately.
  • Transport the sample by keeping it close to your body, for instance in a pocket, to maintain a consistent temperature. To ensure the sample is as fresh as possible (and therefore our testing accurate), please get the sample to us within 60 minutes of collection.
  • Organise a time (at least 3 days prior) to drop off your sample so our scientists expect it and are ready to review it.

Can my partner help?

By all means, if you are at home, your partner can assist you, however, remember, we only want to test your sperm, so please, no bodily fluids such as saliva, lubricants or water should be used.

Can I use lubricant?

As we mentioned above, we only want to test your sperm. Most lubricants, water and other fluids can kill sperm. We need an accurate measurement of your sperm, so no external fluids should be used. Genea Andrology can provide a sperm safe lubricant if you wish.

Does that look like enough?

In all likelihood, you’ve probably never previously thought about ejaculating into a jar, so  when you do, you may be surprised at the quantity. Some men think there is a lot, others less than they expected. Generally speaking, the volume of ejaculate produced by men is greater than or equal to 1.5ml, yet a sample between 1.4 and 1.7ml is still within a normal range. Just remember, our staff will advise you if it is not enough, if they don’t say anything, worry not.

What are the rooms like?

If you decide to collect your sample in our rooms, rest assured, we have done everything we can to make our Andrology labs as discrete, yet comfortable, as possible. You will be advised which lockable room is yours (for as long as you require) and magazines and movies are available to assist the process, if needed.

Next week we will cover sperm quality and preparation for your test.

If you have a question which is not covered above, please remember, we’re very likely to have heard it before. Some of these may be answered on our male fertility page, or, if not, please feel free to call our Andrology labs and one of our friendly staff will be more than happy to help. And remember, this is part one and we’ll be sharing part two next week with more FAQs.


Posted: 16/10/2014 4:28:58 PM by Elizabeth Gosch | with 0 comments
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