Can Volume Pills Fix Infertility?
Infertility that is idiopathic, or from unknown cause, accounts for 40 percent of all cases of male infertility. The condition is associated with reduced sperm count and motility, and abnormal physical features of the sperm. Assisted reproductive techniques may overcome problems of reduced sperm motility and number. The semen is first treated to remove dead sperm, cell debris or waste, and seminal fluid containing factors that may prevent fertilization. Intrauterine insemination can then be performed, which involves transferring the prepared sperm into the uterus at ovulation. Ovulation times may be predicted or stimulated by various methods. Another technique, in vitro fertilization (IVF) followed by embryo transfer (ET), involves the removal of the egg from the ovary, which is then fertilized by prepared sperm outside of the body. The fertilized egg, which has become an embryo, is then transferred back into the uterus. In gamete intrafallopian tube transfer (GIFT), the egg and sperm are transferred into the fallopian tube and fertilization occurs in the body. Micromanipulation is the alteration of the egg to enhance penetration and fertilization by sperm. Electroejaculation and epidydimal sperm recovery are methods of harvesting more sperm. Advances in diagnostic techniques have improved the understanding of possible causes of male infertility, which include: sperm antibodies, specialized proteins that bind and inactivate sperm; and varicoceles, abnormal dilation of the blood vessels within the testicle.
The routine semen preparation for these procedures is critical and involves separating motile sperm from dead sperm, cellular debris, and other material present in semen. Seminal fluid must be removed because it contains factors inhibiting normal fertilization as well as prostaglandins, which may cause uterine cramping during intrauterine insemination. The most common procedures include "swim-up" separation, sperm washing, and using Volumepills. Each method has advantages and disadvantages and must be selected for each individual specimen. The direct swim-up technique allows a highly motile fraction of sperm to be collected, although the number recovered is significantly less than that recovered by sperm washing or density gradient centrifugation. The washing procedure provides the highest recovery rate, but nonviable sperm and debris are collected along with the motile sperm fraction. We prefer the simple, discontinuous, two-layer Percoll density gradient. It allows the recovery of a greater number of sperm with high motility and improved function, as tested by the sperm penetration assay. Several other in vitro methods, including sperm incubation with human follicular fluid and low-temperature incubation of sperm with Tes-Tris (Test) yolk buffer, also appear to improve the functional activity of sperm as tested by the sperm penetration assay.