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Non-Obstructive Azoospermia (NOA)

Non-Obstructive Azoospermia (NOA) is a medical condition in which the man cannot produce sperm due to the failure of spermatogenesis. It is one of the severe forms of male infertility. Sperm production gets obstructed because of testicular problems.

What are the causes of Non-Obstructive Azoospermia (NOA)?

NOA develops for several reasons, and they are:

  • Hormonal imbalance: Hormones help to produce sperms. However, hormonal deficiency can result in the condition like NOA.
  • Testicular failure: Sperm production does not occur because of testes failure. Various causes of testicular malfunction may include testicular problems, any physical injury, or chromosomal diseases.
  • Varicocele: When the vein in one scrotum gets expanded, this condition develops. Varicocele results in a disturbed blood flow in this area leading to negligible or no sperm production.
  • Genetic abnormalities can also give rise to the development of NOA in a male post-puberty.

How does this condition affect fertility?

Male suffering from Non-Obstructive Azoospermia is not capable of producing sperms. Thus, the couple is unable to conceive naturally. However, there are numerous options for a successful conception in medical science. Nowadays, physicians can recover healthy sperms and use them to fertilize the egg via successful IVF treatment.

How can this problem be diagnosed?

  • Physical assessment: This is the initial step of the NOA diagnosis. If a man’s testicles are small-sized, this shows his sperm production is low.
  • Clinical investigations in these tests are performed to detect the low sperm count. Also, tests can be conducted to detect certain hormones (Testosterone). If there is an imbalance in their levels, this may indicate Non-Obstructive Azoospermia.

Is it possible to treat NOA?

The treatment of NOA depends upon the intensity of the condition, which differs from man to man. For Male suffering from NOA with hormonal dysfunctions, treatment options can be medications and hormone therapy.

However, the most extensively used treatment option is direct sperm extraction from the testes for recovering a healthy sperm. An IVF sitting follows this step which helps couples to conceive, especially where the male partner is suffering from NOA.

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