Semen analysis

A routine semen analysis (SA) is a simple procedure involving our scientists looking at the sperm within a ejaculated semen sample. SA is performed as the first line of investigations in a client’s fertility. There are four main parts to the analysis:

Concentration

This refers to the number of sperm within the sample per ml. The number of sperm will inform us if there is a likely male factor contributing to infertility.

Motility

Refers to the movement of sperm. This is categorised into four levels; A – forward progressive, B – slow progressive, C – non-progressive, D – immotile. Normal samples are categorised as having a combined value of 32% or more grade A and B motile sperm.

Morphology

This refers to the appearance of individual sperm. Most sperm in the ejaculate will be abnormal in appearance. A normal sample is defined as having 4% or greater normal forms.

Anti-sperm Antibodies (ASAB)

Occasionally the blood-testis barrier may be breached due to trauma or testicular torsion. If this happens the body recognises sperm as a foreign body and will start to produce antibodies to fight against them. If a sample tests positive for ASAB it can have detrimental effects over sperm function and reduce the chance of natural conception.