Men's Health Blog - May 2019
At Home Sperm Testing: Should You Do it Early in the Course of Trying to Get Pregnant?
Stanton Honig, MD
Professor of Urology
Director of Men’s Health
330 Orchard Street, Suite 164
New Haven, CT 06511
Sperm Check, which was the first one on the market and has been available for many years is a home test similar to a home pregnancy test where a specimen is collected and the fluid is placed in a kit. Within an hour, you can read the results within a certain range. A second kit called Trak Fertility uses a similar approach, where a specimen is collected and using a home centrifuge the specimen is concentrated and a readout provided with a range of results.
The newest option available is called Yo Sperm. This uses smart phone technology by analyzing a picture of the specimen and then counts the number of cells and gives you a result of the number of moving or motile sperm per cc in the sample. All of the at home test kits appear to be about 95-97 percent accurate compared to the results of using the standard semen analysis testing in the laboratory.
The benefits of home testing is that a couple can check to determine if there are any male factor problems early and in the comfort of their home, and then if an abnormality is identified they can seek out the care of a reproductive urologist. This is very important because there are many treatable and reversible conditions associated with male factor infertility. In addition, sometimes male infertility can be a sign of an underlying serious medical problem, therefore getting checked out by a specialist is very important in this situation.
In the age of millennials where instant information has become very important, these home tests are a great option and first step to give patients an initial start in determining if there is a concern to be addressed under the care of a urologist. At Yale Urology we have a team that can provide an evaluation, take a thorough history, a physical exam, and a formal semen analysis to determine what next steps may be necessary to address any underlying problem.