Lower sperm counts and other parameters of impaired sperm were observed in men having a longer duration of infertility problem. From the study of 1644 infertile men, old age and higher body mass index were also associated with longer duration of infertility. These findings are reported in the journal BJU International.
Approximately 15 percent of couples of reproductive age fail to achieve a wanted pregnancy within a 12-month period, despite regular unprotected sexual intercourse. Prolonged infertility has been considered a psycho-social stress for the infertile couple that may lead to poor marital adjustment and decreased quality of life, but the potential role of the duration of infertility in terms of couple's reproductive health remains understudied.
‘Longer duration of infertility leads to psycho-social stress among infertile couples, that causes poor marital adjustments and low quality of life.’
"Our results suggest that duration of infertility should be considered a potential risk factor for impaired sperm parameters in infertile men. Also, infertile couples should be made aware of the associations found in this study," said lead author Dr. Luca Boeri, of IRCCS San Raffaele Hospital and University Vita-Salute San Raffaele, in Italy.