Semen Test & Analysis
A semen test, also known as a semen analysis or sperm test, is a diagnostic test performed to assess the quality and quantity of sperm in a man’s semen. It is a standard procedure used to evaluate male fertility and can provide valuable information about sperm count, motility (movement), morphology (shape) and other factors that can affect fertility. Here’s what you can expect during a semen test:
Collection of semen sample
The semen sample is typically collected through masturbation into a sterile container provided by the laboratory or clinic. It’s important to follow the specific instructions given to you by the healthcare provider or laboratory regarding how to collect the sample. In some cases, the sample may need to be collected at the clinic or laboratory itself.
Prior to the test, you may be advised to abstain from ejaculation for a specific period, typically ranging from 2 to 5 days. This period of abstinence helps ensure an adequate sperm count for the analysis.
Transporting the sample
After collection, the semen sample needs to be transported to the laboratory promptly. It is important to keep the sample at body temperature and avoid exposure to extreme temperatures or agitation during transportation.
The semen sample will be analysed in the laboratory. The analysis typically includes the following parameters:
- Sperm count: The number of sperm present in a given volume of semen
- Sperm motility: The percentage of sperm that are moving and the quality of their movement
- Sperm morphology: The shape and structure of sperm cells
- Semen volume: The amount of semen produced during ejaculation
- pH level: The acidity or alkalinity of the semen
- White blood cell count: The presence of white blood cells in the semen, which may indicate infection or inflammation
Results and interpretation
The laboratory will provide a detailed report with the results of the semen analysis. The results will be interpreted by a healthcare professional who will assess the parameters and provide insights into fertility potential. They will discuss the findings with you and, if necessary, recommend further evaluation or treatment options based on the results.
It’s important to note that the results of a semen analysis are not the sole determinant of fertility. Other factors, such as hormone levels, overall health, and the reproductive health of the female partner, also play a role. If you have concerns about your fertility or are having difficulty conceiving, it is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional.