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Male Infertility

The Southeastern Fertility Center is the region's leading referral center for treatment of male infertility, low sperm count, and all male-related fertility problems.

This section is more appropriately labeled male subfertility since recent advances in the diagnosis and treatment of male fertility factors allow virtually all men the opportunity to become fathers.

Male related fertility factors generally are caused by low numbers, poor movement, or abnormal structure of the sperm. However, functional abnormalities of the sperm may also be present, even if all other parameters are normal.

The basic semen analysis is the best tool for initial evaluation of the male. However, other tests which may be recommended include:

  • Sperm Antibody Testing
  • Kruger Morphology
  • Sperm Penetration Assay
  • Computer Assisted Movement Analysis
  • Urologic Examination
  • Karyotyping
  • Testicular Biopsy
  • Ultrasound Exam
  • Hormonal Evaluation

If you have been told that you (or your partner) have some problem with the sperm or semen, click on this link for information which may be of help. (Male Factor Information).

The Southeastern Fertility Center is fortunate to be associated with Dr. Ed Kim. Dr. Kim joined the University of Tennessee Medical Center after being in practice with Dr. Larry Lipshultz, the past president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and one of the world's leading authorities on male subfertility. Dr. Kim's experience allows evaluation and treatment modalities that are available at only a handful of centers in the United States.


Methods of treatment for male subfertility include intrauterine insemination, hormonal therapy, lifestyle changes, various surgical procedures, and of course, ICSI. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection has truly revolutionized the treatment of the subfertile male since it's introduction in 1992.

ICSI is performed in conjunction with other techniques for In Vitro Fertilization. After stimulation of the wife's ovaries to induce development of multiple eggs, the eggs are retrieved and carefully separated from the surrounding, attached cells. Using a specially developed microscope and glass needles, a micromanipulator is used to inject a single sperm into each egg. Although one might conclude that all such injected eggs are now "fertilized", in actuality, the fertilization rate with ICSI is about the same as in conventional IVF, i.e. approximately 65-70%. Thus, only a dozen or so sperm (as opposed to many million) are necessary to achieve a pregnancy with ICSI. This number of sperm are retrievable in the vast majority of subfertile males. Please refer to our section on IVF.