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Sperm Function Tests

A Sperm function test is an examination that measures whether the quality of sperm is good enough to fertilize the ovum (egg). For performing this examination, sperm must be produced in satisfactory numbers. Sperm must exhibit normal shape and motility, should cross the cervical mucus and the uterus. If any of these parameters are not met, then male infertility may result. 
The sperm function test also detects irregularities in sperm which naturally bring about infertility. The diagnosis of male fertility is carried out after examining different parameters:
•    Sperm count: the number of sperm cells present in the ejaculate
•    Sperm motility: percentage of motile cells 
•    Sperm morphology: percentage those are normal in shape.
If the concentration, morphology, and motility of the sperm are reduced, all these directly affect the motile sperm count. And this, in turn reflects the capacity of attaining a high sperm concentration to the egg site for completing the process of fertilization. If the basic semen analysis shows all these sperm irregularities or if unexplained infertility has been diagnosed, then the couple must move forward towards the analysis of sperm function test.

What is a Sperm Penetration Assay?

Sperm penetration tests detect whether a male’s sperm can cross the cervical mucus. This test yields information related to the fertilizing ability of the sperm by testing certain parameters like sperm-egg cell fusion and the incorporation of the sperm into the center of the egg.

Sperm Mucus Penetration

This test is done to detect the ability of sperm to go through the cervical mucus. It has been found to give good results like semen analysis in examining progressive sperm motility (sperm movement).

What are the reasons to carry out a sperm penetration test?

This test is performed to:
•    Assess the sperm function when semen analysis detects an irregular sperm morphology or slow sperm movement.
•    Examine the sperm function and regularity prior to taking it for an in vitro fertilization.
•    Thus, it accurately predicts the probability of success with IVF. These days, there is an increased use of techniques like IVF/ICSI, so sperm function tests are less extensively used by doctors. Regardless of this, the utility of these tests to accurately spot which couples require proceeding to IVF/ICSI would correspond to a key innovation toward an economical and health-conscious intervention for couples with infertility.

Types of treatment related to this article

Semen analysis is the microscopic examination of the shape, number, and movement of sperm. It is done on the freshly ejaculated semen in a laboratory. Male

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