Man's Reproductive System
In men, the
testicles are responsible for sperm production. Hormones regulate
this production. Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), lutenizing
hormone (LH) and testosterone are all important for sperm production.
Sperm mature in the epididymis which is coiled across the top of
The mature sperm
travel through the vas deferens, which are the tubes that carry
the sperm from the epididymis to the penis. The seminal vesicles
and the prostate gland add fluids to the sperm as they journey through
the vas deferens.
of fluid and sperm is now called semen. The semen released during
a single ejaculation contains up to 200 million sperm cells. The
tails of the sperm cells propel the sperm through the vagina. Many
of the sperm die in the vagina which is a relatively acidic and
hostile environment for the sperm. The sperm have to make a tiresome
journey through the vagina, pass through the cervix into the uterus
and then into the fallopian tubes in search of the awaiting egg.
If a sperm cell reaches the egg, it must then penetrate the egg
cell so that the genetic material from the father and the mother
can unite to create a new and unique organism capable of developing
into a human being. Any disruption to these complex processes may
contribute to infertility. The problems contributing to infertility
in a man may be hormonal, chemical, or physical.
encounter difficulty conceiving. A diagnosis of infertility doesn't
always mean that pregnancy can't happen. Infertility can often be
resolved with proper diagnosis, intervention and treatment. Seeking
medical advice from a fertility expert is important in getting personal
questions answered and learning more about the infertility treatment
options available to you.