What's Involved in a Semen Analysis?

When conception isn’t coming easily, and you decide it’s time to seek medical expertise, your partner will likely undergo plenty of tests and interviews. The female reproductive system is vastly complex, and there are multiple factors that may affect fertility. That’s why many people mistakenly believe that infertility is typically a female issue. 

But men account for half of all fertility challenges, so it’s important to consider your role as well. After checking for obvious obstacles, such as vasectomy, illness, and erectile dysfunction, one of the first steps is evaluating your semen. 

At IVFMD, our fertility experts perform a thorough semen analysis to determine if there are any issues with the health of your ejaculate. The test checks for key aspects in your sperm that influence your fertility so we can advise you about how to improve your chances of conception. Here’s what to expect.

Reasons you may need a semen analysis

If you and your partner have been trying to get pregnant for several months with no success, you may be starting to wonder if there’s a problem. The fact is, conception is complicated, and while some couples get pregnant on the first try, about 93% of healthy fertile couples take up to two years to finally succeed. 

But if you’re past the one-year benchmark (or six months if your partner is 37 or older) and still don’t have a baby, it’s time to come see us at IVFMD. For men, the standard operating procedure begins with a semen analysis to determine fertility.

The other reason men might need a semen analysis is to test the success (or failure) of a vasectomy. The goal of a vasectomy is to keep sperm out of your ejaculate, and a semen analysis can determine whether sperm are present or not. You may need to have a semen analysis once a month, up to three months in a row to be sure. 

Finally, a semen analysis can test for the return of your sperm after a vasectomy reversal.

What to expect during your semen analysis

A semen analysis is as simple as providing a sample of your ejaculate so it can be tested in a laboratory. That said, there are some guidelines we ask you to follow to ensure your sample is healthy and uncontaminated.

Once your system is clear of substances that can potentially alter your results, it’s time to analyze your semen.

How to collect your semen sample

We understand that this part may feel uncomfortable for many men. Rest assured that at IVFMD, our mission is to help couples conceive by providing education, expertise, advanced technology, and above all, a safe, comfortable, private environment free of judgment. Our team is committed to treating you and your partner with dignity and respect throughout your fertility journey.

When you need to provide a semen sample for analysis, we offer you optional ways to collect it and let you choose the method that’s best for you. 

Many of our male patients choose to provide their sample while they’re here in our office. In this case, we offer you a private room where you can masturbate to produce a sample. 

If you prefer intercourse instead of masturbation, at our clinic, you can purchase specialized condoms that don’t harm the sperm. You then place the condom filled with semen in a container and bring it to the clinic within 60 minutes. Keep the sample at body temperature, as lower temperatures slow down your sperm and skew the results of your semen analysis. 

Optimizing your semen sample

The best semen sample is clear of any foreign substances, which is why we ask you to avoid certain drinks, drugs, and medications. 

But there are other factors that can adversely affect your results, including semen:

To avoid invalidating your semen analysis, it’s critical to understand these factors that can interfere with your results. 

What happens after you provide your semen sample?

Your part is done. After you provide your semen sample, we analyze using the strict Kroger criteria, which is a far more stringent standard than many other labs require. 

The multiple isolated factors we consider include:

By analyzing the number, shape, size, and movement of your sperm, we can determine whether they are likely or unlikely to reach and fertilize an egg, and what to do next if your results are abnormal. 

We use the most advanced technology available to ensure the most accurate results. This includes the HalospermⓇ test, which detects damage to your sperm’s DNA, which may have been caused by exposure to chemicals or smoking, aging, free radicals, or obesity. The Halosperm test clearly identifies sperm with normal versus abnormal DNA.

To learn more about semen analysis, male fertility, and the tests and treatments you may need, contact us by phone or online to schedule a consultation at any of our three IVFMD offices in Arlington, Grapevine, or Irving Texas.


You Might Also Enjoy...

When Is the Best Time of Month to Get Pregnant?

When you’re trying to get pregnant, timing is everything. There’s actually a very small window each month when you’re fertile and able to conceive. Here’s what you need to know about ovulation, sex, and fertilization.

Who Should Freeze Their Eggs?

More and more women are freezing their eggs these days for various reasons. Find out why they’re doing it, and learn if it’s right for you.

Myths and Facts About IVF

If you’re facing infertility, you have enough to deal with without worrying about what’s true and what’s not. Here’s a clear and honest look at IVF, so you can focus on what’s right for you.

Tips for Men Trying to Improve Their Fertility

If you’re having trouble getting your partner pregnant, there’s a 50-50 chance the problem is on your side of the bed. Fortunately, many cases of male infertility can be addressed with simple lifestyle changes. Here are some things to try.

Does Endometriosis Impact Fertility?

Pain, heavy periods, and uncomfortable sex are some of the classic signs of endometriosis, but is infertility one of them, too? Find out how this chronic condition may affect your ability to conceive.