Male Infertility & Family Planning

It can be frustrating and distressing to experience infertility when you’re trying to start or grow your family. More than a third of these difficulties can be traced to male infertility, with our specialized urology team able to help.

At MUSC Health, we have one of the few fellowship-trained men’s sexual health and fertility specialists in the state. This special expertise means that we offer the latest diagnostic and treatment methods to help you start a family. If you don’t want to add to your family – or your life circumstances change – we are also experts at vasectomies and vasectomy reversals.

Request an Appointment

To request more information about our male infertility and family planning services or to make an appointment with Dr. Marc Rogers, please call 843-792-7888. You can also learn more about MUSC urology, including who’s on our team and where we’re located.

Male Fertility & Family Planning Services at MUSC

If you and your partner are unable to conceive a baby within a year of trying, doctors typically recommend that you see a fertility specialist. At MUSC Health, our fertility experts understand how stressful it can be to face challenges when you’re ready to start or grow your family. We can help find the causes of male infertility and treat it so that you and your partner can achieve a successful pregnancy.

If you don’t want to start or add to your family, or you change your mind after having a vasectomy, our urologists offer vasectomy procedures to help you with family planning.

  • Our fertility and family planning services for men include:

    Medical evaluation of and treatment for male infertility
  • Sperm harvest (sperm retrieval) for use in assisted reproductive technologies (ART) such as in vitro fertilization
  • Vasectomies
  • Vasectomy reversals

Causes of Male Infertility

Disorders that affect sperm production and transport (such as blockages) cause most instances of male infertility. A variety of environmental and medical factors can cause or raise the risk of male infertility. These factors include:

  • Varicocele, an enlarged vein in your scrotum that reduces sperm production
  • Retrograde ejaculation, when the semen goes into the bladder instead of out through the urethra
  • Hormone imbalances, including low testosterone (though taking testosterone directly can actually lower fertility)
  • Chromosomal abnormalities
  • Reproductive blockage or obstruction, when sperm is blocked from leaving your body
  • Undescended testicles, a testicle that did not move down into the scrotum
  • Erectile dysfunction

Certain lifestyle factors can lead to male infertility, including:

  • Tobacco use
  • Obesity
  • Overheated testicles from hot tubs or underwear that is too tight

Diagnosing Male Infertility

We start our diagnostic evaluation with a physical exam, a medical history and a reproductive history. Your evaluation may also include:

  • Semen analysis: To evaluate the amount, shape and motility of sperm and look for signs of infection.
  • Hormone level test: To check if you have too little or too much testosterone and other hormones responsible for producing sperm.
  • Genetic testing: To diagnose a genetic abnormality or congenital (present at birth) or inherited syndrome that affects sperm quality and production.

Male Infertility Treatment Options

After our urologists establish a diagnosis for the cause of infertility, we work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan. Treatments include:

  • Medications to treat symptoms such as hormone imbalances or erectile dysfunction
  • Varicocelectomy, minor outpatient surgery to repair varicoceles
  • Surgery to repair blockages
  • Hormone treatment to boost sperm production

Because infertility is a complex issue and can involve both male and female challenges, we work closely with reproductive endocrinologists in the area to come up with the ideal treatment plan. Recommendations may include advanced reproductive techniques such as intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).