Cryptorchidism and Male Infertility

Patient

Q: My husband when he was born had one descended testicle so they performed surgery on him to correct it that was when he was a baby. For his entire life he has suffered from severe delayed ejaculation. he has never fathered children and is now 45, this bothers him greatly as u could imagine and he is convinced that he cannot have children. Knowing what the problem is would help him greatly but he has always been afraid to hear a negative answer, is there any possibility of the surgery being the cause of his delayed ejactulaion? is there any chance he will ever be able to father a child? while i am happy just being with him i know this is very important to him and i am just trying to see if there is anything anyone can do to help.

Doctor

A:   The medical term for undescended testicles is cryptorchidism.  it is a common condition in which one of the testicles is located outside of the scrotum. It occurs in 30% of premature males and 3% of term males.  The exact cause is unknown but it is more common in males with a family history of undescended testicles, low birth weight infants, premature infants, and infants of multiple births.
It can be treated with hormone therapy, manual manipulation or surgery.
Men with cryptorchidism have a higher incidence of testicular cancer, infertility and sub-fertility.  It is thought that treatment helps to reduce the incidence of these conditions.
The only way to tell if your husband is capable of producing sperm and fathering children is to see your doctor and have a spermanalysis test ordered.  It is a simple, painless test where a sample of male ejaculate is examined under the microscope to assess for quantity and quality of sperm production.
 

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