April 5, 2011

Fertility in Older Men

Fertility is well known to decline in women with advancing age. Less is known concerning men, although, sperm parameters and fertility rates have been reported to be decreased in men older than 50 years of age. Chromosome abnormalities have also been reported to be increased in men over age 50 compared to men under age 40.
A recent study (Fertil Steril. 2011;95:147) looking at 1,392 donor cycles from 1,083 donor egg recipients and their male partners found that both semen volume and sperm motility were significantly decreased in older men. Following intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), however, there was no difference in pregnancy outcome between couples with regards to the man’s age. This study should be reassuring to couples using donor eggs in which the male is of advanced paternal age, especially if they are using ICSI for insemination.

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Joseph A. Hill, III, M.D.

Joseph A. Hill, III, M.D. Board-Certified in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility