Does Men’s Fertility Decline With Age?
Studies have shown that even in males the fertility reduces with aging. This fertility decline in males and females is a global concern, as most of the couples start a family life close to their 30’s due to their education, jobs and other priorities in life. Therefore, many couples have difficulties in becoming pregnant.
What Are The Reasons For Fertility Decline With Age?
With increase of age there are many factors that affect the male fertility and the overall chance of being able to get pregnant. The below mentioned facts are the reason for the fertility decline with age in males.
Reduced Sexual Function: Having regular sexual intercourse which is sexual intercourse every 2, 3 days is an important aspect of fertility. Decreased sexual intercourse frequency reduces the chance of getting pregnant. This decreased sexual intercourse is mainly due to the reduced testosterone levels. Testosterone production gradually reduce with age at a rate of 0.4 to 2% per year after the age of 30 years. Low testosterone reduces the sexual drive and cause erectile dysfunction which affect the frequency of sexual intercourse immensely.
A study done on 1085 men in the age group of 40 to 70 years to check the sexual function and intercourse frequency who were followed up for 9 years showed that men involved in sexual activity at an average of 6.5 times per month before the age of 40, this reduced by once per month after the age of 40, then twice per month after the age of 50 and three times per month after the age of 60 from the baseline. The average number of erections were 24 per month, this reduced by 3 after the age of 40, by 9 after the age of 60 and by 13 after the age of 60.
Changes In Semen Parameters With Increasing Age
Sperm Concentration: Many studies have shown that there is a decrease in the sperm concentration with advancing age. It is said that sperm concentration reduce 3.3% per year of age, but some studies report there is no change in sperm concentration until age 50. Study done on 800 men who age from 20 to 60 years who were undergoing fertility treatment along with their partner showed that men in their 20’s had about 107 million sperm count whereas men in 50’s had about 35.5 million sperms.
Motility: Sperm motility reduces from 0.17 to 0.6% with each year of age, which results in 3% to 12% reduction in motility throughout a 20-year period. In another study the motility reduction was 0.8% per year of age.
Morphology: Like the motility the morphology also decreases with age. Studies show that the morphology reduced from 0.2% to 0.9% with each year of age, which results in 4% to 18% reduction in morphology throughout a 20-year period.
Semen Volume: There is a mild reduction in the semen volume as well. Seminal fluid is produced by the seminal vesicles and prostate glands and problem in these and reduction in testosterone levels with aging can decrease the semen volume. Studies show there is a 0.15% to 0.2% reduction in semen volume per each year of age, which results in 3% to 4% reduction in semen volume throughout a 20-year period. Reduced semen volume affect the motility of the sperms.
Generally if both partners are less than 25 years, it takes about averagely 5 months to conceive whereas when the male partner is older than 40 years it takes about 2 years.
The rate of in vitro fertilization in men age less than 39-year-old is about 60% and in men older than 39 years it’s 51%.
Men’s fertility decline with age as well, many studies done on this and it is shown there is a decline in men’s fertility with age. The reasons for that are reduced sexual function due to reduction in testosterone levels and changes in seminal fluid parameters such as low sperm concentration, reduce sperm motility, morphology and seminal fluid volume. Generally if both partners are less than 25 year it takes about averagely 5 months to conceive whereas when the male partner is older than 40 years it takes about 2 years.