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Infections: The Leading Cause of Infertility in Men and Women (PART 1)
Have you been worried about why, as a man, you are yet to get your wife pregnant or, as a woman, you are yet to conceive? Of course, you want to be a father, and you want to be a mother. But do you know that this issue could mean infertility? That is the infertility of either the man or the woman, or both.
What exactly is infertility?
Infertility is the inability to conceive. When a woman is unable to get pregnant through unprotected sexual intercourse, the condition is known as infertility. It may stem from an issue with you or your wife; both partners can contribute to infertility. In some cases, infertility can affect one or both partners.
According to experts, infertility affects 10% to 15% of all couples. Infection is a major cause of infertility, both in males and females.
Let’s see some infections that enhance or stimulate infertility in men and women.
Infections that can cause infertility in men include:
Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by bacterial infection. You will notice this bacterial infection when you begin to experience symptoms such as a burning sensation during urination, discharges from the penis, and swollen testicles. In most women, there are no symptoms of the infection. But possible symptoms include burning sensations during urination as well as painful sex and unusual vaginal discharge. Chlamydia can cause infertility by hindering the production of sperm. It is noteworthy to be aware that antibiotics that can cure chlamydia if detected and treated early are available in medicine stores.
This is a sexually transmitted infection that can cause infertility in men. It rarely shows symptoms, but some include green, yellow, or white discharge from the penis, painful urination, burning sensation around the penis, swelling of the testicles, or pain in the testicles. Gonorrhea can lead to epididymitis and prostate gland infection, and these are capable of lowering sperm production and its quality.
If left untreated, gonorrhea can spread into the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries of women. The result is that the fallopian tube is scarred and prevents sperm from reaching the egg for fertilization to occur. Antibiotics are also known to cure gonorrhea if detected and treated early enough.
This causes pain, inflammation, or swelling of the epididymis. The epididymis is a duct that helps in the movement of sperm. Epididymitis in many cases, is caused by sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea or chlamydia. It can also be caused by an infection in the urinary tract in men. Epididymitis has symptoms that include swollen, red, or warm scrotum, painful urination, frequent urination, pain in the lower abdomen, blood traces in semen, painful left testicles, discharge from the penis, and so on.
Mycoplasma is another sexually transmitted condition that can cause low movement of sperm cells, i.e., low motility of sperm cells. Mycoplasma has no noticeable symptoms until it is diagnosed as the cause of infertility.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
An unwanted growth of bacteria in the urine is the cause of the bacteria in the urine. Symptoms of urinary tract infection include fever, chills, and a burning sensation during urination. If not tackled at the early stage, the bacteria may spread to reproductive parts such as the epididymis, testicles, and other sex glands, thereby causing low sperm count and reduced motility.
Sources: Cleveland Clinic, NHS, and Novai
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