Trying to Conceive: Semen Analysis
He can collect the sample by masturbating or by having intercourse using a special lubricant-free and spermicide-free condom. (He should ask the doctor to recommend a specific brand and make sure the lab tech knows how the sample was collected!)
To be sure that the semen analysis provides accurate information about the man's fertility when youre trying to conceive, he should:
- Avoid ejaculation two to three days before giving the sample
- Collect the sample in a clean, sealed container
- Store the sample at average body temperature
- Return the sample to a designated lab within one hour of collection
If the results of the analysis are abnormal, the test should be repeated at least two more times while you're trying to conceive—fevers, infections and viruses can affect a man's sperm count for months. If the next few tests comes back abnormal, he may need to undergo a sperm antibody test (to see whether his body is producing antibodies to his own sperm), hormonal blood tests (to indicate the levels of male and female hormones in his body), and an exam to check for varicocele. It's rare, but he may need to undergo a testicular biopsy (to determine if his fertility issues are caused by a lack of sperm-producing cells in his testicles, in which case he is permanently sterile), vasography (to examine the structure of his duct system and locate any obstructions), and a fructose test (to see if seminal vesicles are adding fructose to semen, like they should be).