Phone: (713) 798-4001 | Houston, TX

Sep 22, 2015 — by Larry Lipshultz

Happy couple holding a baby and smilingWhile women’s reproductive issues are far more commonly discussed, male fertility can certainly be a factor in a couple’s ability to conceive. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “many couples struggle with infertility and seek help to become pregnant; however, it is often thought of as only a women’s condition. A CDC study…found that 7.5% of all sexually experienced men younger than age 45 reported seeing a fertility doctor during their lifetime - this equals 3.3 to 4.7 million men.” At our urology practice, Dr. Larry Lipshultz and our team diagnose and treat a wide range of male reproductive issues. In the following blog post, we’ll go over post-testicular causes of male infertility and explain how we can help at our Houston office.

The Three Types of Male Infertility

There are three primary classes of male infertility conditions. These are:

  • Pre-testicular, meaning that a man’s reproductive difficulties stem from systemic issues. For example, hormonal imbalances, psychological issues, poor diet, the aging process, and obesity can all contribute to male infertility.
  • Testicular, resulting from poor testicular function. This could be due to anatomical issues, congenital conditions, damage to the tissue, infection, cancer, irregular sperm morphology, or other issues.
  • Post-testicular, which refers to male infertility issues that prevent healthy sperm from traveling to the tip of the penis. These conditions mainly affect the ducts within the penis and a man’s ability to ejaculate properly.

Dr. Lipshultz can assist you with all three types of male infertility.

Common Post-Testicular Issues

There are a number of circumstances that can impair your penile function and cause post-testicular male infertility. Some of the most common issues include:

  • Hypospadias, a condition in which the opening is not positioned at the tip of the penis. About one out of every 250 males is born with this condition.
  • Aspermia, in which the male reproductive system fails to produce ejaculate.
  • Retrograde ejaculation. Men with this condition ejaculate semen into their bladder rather than through the urethra. Retrograde ejaculation is often linked to aspermia.
  • Erectile dysfunction, meaning difficulty getting or sustaining an erection on a regular basis.
  • Blockages in the epididymis, ejaculatory ducts, or vas deferens.
  • Prior vasectomy (the surgery used to intentionally block sperm from traveling to the tip of the penis during ejaculation).
  • Side effects or complications from previous hernia procedures in the groin region.

At your initial consultation, Dr. Lipshultz can determine if you suffer from one or more of the above.

Our Treatment Options

If you’ve been diagnosed with post-testicular male infertility, we can help. Dr Lipshultz and our team offer a variety of treatments that can improve your chances for conception. We will create a customized treatment plan based on your particular needs and preferences. For example, Dr. Lipshultz can perform vasectomy reversal surgery to restore your fertility, recommend a variety of therapies to help with erectile dysfunction, or guide you and your partner through ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) during IVF (in vitro fertilization) for more advanced conditions.

Do You Suffer from Post-Testicular Male Infertility?

Dr. Lipshultz can use his expertise and experience to help you overcome male infertility and achieve your family goals. Contact our urology practice today to find out more about post-testicular causes or schedule a consultation.