Monday, June 15, 2015

Laptops Linked to Male Infertility

Loyola reproductive specialist offers tips to protect male fertility this Father's Day

MAYWOOD - While fatherhood might be far from the minds of most young men, behavior patterns they establish early on may impact their ability to become a dad later in life. Excessive laptop use tops this list of liabilities, according to one reproductive specialist at Loyola University Health System (LUHS).

"Laptops are becoming increasingly common among young men wired into to the latest technology," said Suzanne Kavic, MD, director of the division of reproductive endocrinology at LUHS and associate professor in the department of obstetrics and gynecology and department of medicine at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. "However, the heat generated from laptops can impact sperm production and development making it difficult to conceive down the road."

Kavic recommends placing laptops on desktops to prevent damaging sperm and decreasing counts and motility. Other tips to protect male fertility include:

* Avoiding hot tubs * Using boxers over briefs * Refraining from ejaculating too frequently (the recommendation is to only engage in sexual intercourse every other day around ovulation) * Exercising moderately (one hour, three to five times per week) * Avoiding exercise that can generate heat or trauma to the genital area * Eating well * Taking a daily multivitamin * Getting eight hours of sleep per night * Staying hydrated and limiting caffeine to no more than two cups per day * Refraining from smoking * Avoiding drugs and excessive alcohol use * Minimizing exposure to toxins * Avoiding excessive weight gain or weight loss * Practicing stress reduction techniques

Forty percent of fertility issues are attributed to males. Other leading causes of male infertility include varicocoeles or enlarged varicose veins in the scrotum. This condition can raise the temperature in the testicles and damage or kill sperm. Other reasons include genital injuries or defects, certain sexually transmitted infections, prostatitis (an infection or inflammation of the prostate), immune and hormonal disorders and erectile dysfunction. Kavic also notes that underlying health issues and medications may be to blame for fertility issues.

"Medications for depression, blood pressure and certain heart conditions may lower libido or cause impotence," said Kavic. "Men should talk with their physicians to see if medication is necessary or if they can switch to another with fewer side effects."

Reproductive endocrinology services available for males at LUHS include consultations, medical history and physical examinations, semen analysis, intrauterine inseminations by husband donor, assessments for the need for assisted reproductive technology and referrals to support services and alternative medicine.

"With Father's Day around the corner, males should be reminded to take care of their health," said Kavic. "An annual physical exam combined with a healthy lifestyle may make it easier to become a dad when the time is right." ###

About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is part of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. Loyola University Medical Center’s campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of Chicago’s Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. At the heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is a national Catholic health system with an enduring legacy and a steadfast mission to be a transforming and healing presence within the communities we serve. Trinity is committed to being a people-centered health care system that enables better health, better care and lower costs. Trinity Health has 88 hospitals and hundreds of continuing care facilities, home care agencies and outpatient centers in 21 states and 119,000 employees.