When Should You See a Male Fertility Specialist?
When should you see a male fertility specialist?
The answer to this question depends on your goals. Most couples are very anxious to have children, and find it hard to wait until they’ve tried for a full year without success It is important that couples see an infertility specialist when:
• There’s an abnormality identified in the male
• There’s a history of radiation or chemotherapy
• The female is 35 years of age or older
• Couples can’t conceive after 12 months of trying
• The emotional struggle of infertility becomes a burden for the couple.
The question of the effect of age on fertility is complicated. While it used to be thought that only female fertility declined significantly with age, research now shows male fertility also decreases with advanced age. The male and female reproductive systems have the highest chances of a successful pregnancy at age 24. A gradual decline in success begins for both men and women until age 35, with a rapid decline in success from ages 35-40. That decline decreases every decade after 40 for both genders. Although it is possible for women to conceive naturally after age 40, it is far less likely than when a women is in her 20s or 30s.
For more information on male infertility, contact Dr. Jim Hotaling at (801) 587-1454 or visit healthcare.utah.edu/andrology. For general information on infertility, visit the Utah Center for Reproductive Medicine at healthcare.utah.edu/womenshealth/utah-center-for-reproductive-medicine/.