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The Symptoms of a Low Sperm Count — Infertility May Be Your Only Sign

The symptoms of a low sperm count are generally just a single symptom—you’re unable to get your partner pregnant.

Symptoms of a low sperm count — sad white man in black clothes looking down

If your sperm count is too low, the only real result may be infertility. If we’re talking about the “symptoms” of a low sperm count, this is really all there is.

You see, having a low sperm count is more of a symptom in and of itself, a symptom of an underlying disease or illness.

Having a low sperm count can also be a symptom of a vasectomy (though frankly, this is the point of the procedure). I mention this because, even if you’ve had your vasectomy reversed, you can remain infertile if your body begins producing sperm antibodies.

Other possible causes of a low sperm count include the following:

  • Low testosterone (or another hormone imbalance)
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Alcohol or drug use, abuse, or dependency
  • Genetic abnormalities like Klinefelter syndrome
  • Injury to the genitals

This is by no means a comprehensive list, but all of these issues can cause a low sperm count.

(If you want to learn more about how low testosterone and fertility levels are connected, read this article on the subject.)

So basically, it’s not the symptoms of a low sperm count that you need to be worried about so much as the cause of your low sperm count.

When It Comes to the “Symptoms” of a Low Sperm Count, It’s Really Just Infertility—It’s the Cause That Matters Most

That’s why I try to shy away from discussing the “symptoms” of a low sperm count—sperm count is itself a symptom.

However, the underlying issue that is causing the low sperm count may also cause some other, more noticeable symptoms.

I say more noticeable because it can take quite a while before you can really start to suspect that you may be infertile.

The general advice for couples who suspect infertility is to have unprotected vaginal sex, with the goal of conception, for a year.

That can be a long time to let the potential underlying cause of your symptoms go untreated. And, depending on how often you and your partner are attempting to conceive during that year, a year still may not be enough time to figure out if your sperm count is low.

Of course, you can have your sperm count checked—if you suspect that you’re infertile or that you have some sort of condition causing you to be infertile, speaking with a medical professional, getting your sperm count checked, and discussing any other symptoms, is the best way to ensure you don’t have a more severe underlying problem.

Symptoms of a Low Sperm Count — It’s Best to See a Medical Professional

Now, while there are home testing kits for sperm counts, I really wouldn’t recommend them. It’s hard to tell how accurate these kits really are, and so far, there’s not a lot of data to suggest that they work as they should.

If you suspect that your sperm count is low, you may also want to have your hormone levels checked. Though low testosterone does not always result in a low sperm count (or other sexual issues, like erectile dysfunction), low testosterone may nevertheless be the culprit behind your suspected infertility.

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(Augie) Juan Augustine Galindo Jr. MPAS, PA-C

(Augie) Juan Augustine Galindo Jr. MPAS, PA-C started his career in healthcare as a fireman/paramedic in West Texas where he served on the Midland Fire Department from 1998-2004.   He became interested in testosterone treatment after seeing how hormone replacement doctors helped those suffering from low testosterone.   After graduating from the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center Physician Assistant Program, he moved to DFW where he currently lives with his wife and three children.

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