Estimating fertility potential via semen analysis data

Benjamin Bartoov, Fina Eltes, Mordechai Pansky, Hani Lederman, Eliahu Caspi, Yigal Soffer

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    89 Scopus citations


    The aim of this study was to evaluate diagnostic profiles for the assessment of semen analysis data with respect to male fertility potential. Semen samples taken from 208 patients of known fertility and suspected infertility were studied by conventional semen analysis methods. The data throw doubt upon the validity of an approach based on the number of deviations from the normal standard values defined by the World Health Organization. The alternative approach of a specific semen characteristic (particularly morphology) as the major predictor of fertility produced no beneficial results. However, the semen analysis index based on semen volume, sperm count, percentage motility and normal forms resulted in a high accuracy of classification but for only 44% of the cases, with 3% false negatives and 10% false positives using cut-off indices of ≥0.6 and ≤ - 1.0 for defining 'fertile' and 'infertile' zones, respectively. In conclusion, it is emphasized that there are a number of specific semen analysis variables, each expressing a different aspect of male fertility potential which, when combined in correct proportion, do provide the optimal evaluation of the male fertility status. However, in order to increase the prognostic potential of the semen sample, new and meaningful parameters must be discovered.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)65-70
    Number of pages6
    JournalHuman Reproduction
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 1993

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    We thank Dr P.Kedem and Mr D.Har-Even for their statistical advice; S.Arusi, P.Reuven, D.Abargel and Y.Shiach for skilful technical assistance; Ms P.Pinker for reviewing and Ms S.Victor for preparation of the manuscript. This research was supported by Fonds Ihel, Haim et Sara Bessinover Dragonster and the Health Sciences Research Centre, Department of Life Sciences, Bar-Han University, to B.Bartoov.


    • Fertility potential
    • Infertility diagnosis
    • Male infertility
    • Semen analysis
    • Spermatozoa


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