February 3, 2018

Over-The-Counter Pain Killers Adversely Affect Sperm

otc painkillers sperm

Sperm production in Western countries have decreased by 50% over the past 40 years. Reasons for this phenomenon have been largely unknown. A study published this week in the journal, “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,” revealed that libido, male hormone production (LH & Testosterone), and sperm production are negatively affected by common over the counter pain killers including aspirin, acetaminophen and most significantly by the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), Ibuprofen. The results of the study concluded that over-the-counter pain killers adversely affect sperm.

This hormonal imbalance can cause hypogonadism which is associated not only with decreased fertility, but also with depression and increased cardiovascular events including heart failure and stroke. The negative effects noted in this small Danish study in young men was reversible after discontinuing these medications. Whether these negative effects are reversible in long term users is unknown. Men contemplating fatherhood should refrain from using pain killers whenever possible and if absolutely necessary their use should be of the shortest duration possible.

 If you have questions about what medications are safe to take or questions regarding your fertility or would like to set up a consultation, please contact us today.

 

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