What Is the Normal Semen Volume in Males?

By (embryologist), (embryologist), (gynaecologist), (gynecologist), (embryologist), (embryologist) and (invitra staff).
Last Update: 07/25/2023

One of the first parameters studied in the seminogram is the volume of ejaculated semen. Although this value does not directly refer to the amount of sperm present in the ejaculation, it is important to check that the amount of ejaculated sperm is sufficient for some to reach the uterus and that, therefore, it is possible to achieve fertilization and pregnancy in a natural way.

When a man is diagnosed with low semen volume, an appropriate lifestyle is usually advised. Therefore, specialists recommend avoiding the consumption of toxic substances and to take care of nutrition.

How will sperm volume be analized?

The volume of ejaculated sperm is measured in milliliters with a laboratory pipette. The average amount of semen per ejaculate in men is between 2 and 4 ml, although it is a value that can vary depending on different aspects, such as sexual abstinence, stress, and so on.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an ejaculate volume from 1.5 ml is considered normal. Results above the reference value do not indicate changes affecting fertility. However, a volume of ejaculated semen less than this value gives rise to the pathology known as hypospermia.

Alterations in male fertility

As we will see below, there are some alterations related to the volume of ejaculation that can compromise the reproductive capacity of men. In the following sections, we describe each of these alterations.


Hypospermia or a small amount of semen produces male infertility since if less than 1.5 ml of ejaculate volume is expelled, it is difficult for sperm to travel all the way to the ampulla area, in the fallopian tubes, where the egg is found.

By using assisted reproduction techniques, such as ICSI, where few sperm are needed, men who have hypospermia have a good chance of being parents since although the volume of ejaculate is less than 1.5 ml, a very low amount of sperm is required to perform this technique.

If you want more information about this pathology, you can find it in this article: Hypospermia: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment.

It should be noted that before diagnosing hypospermia, it is advisable to ensure that the sample has been obtained correctly and that the entire ejaculate has been collected. To this end, the patient will be asked specifically whether he or she has provided the entire sample or only partially.

In the event that only part of it has been delivered, the diagnosis could be wrong. Abstinence days referred by the patient should also be taken into account. Is the number of abstinence days less than 2, it is normal that the volume of ejaculate decreases.

Related topic: Hypospermia.


Another more serious volume-related complication is aspermia, where the man is not able to expel any fluid in the ejaculation. In this case, the cause of this alteration should be found and sperm production in the testicles checked.

It has two main causes:

  • Retrograde ejaculation: the ejaculate is not expelled to the outside, but flows into the bladder.
  • Obstruction or absence of any of the ejaculatory ducts.

It is important to note that aspermia is not the same as azoospermia. In the first case, there is no seminal volume, while in the second case there is ejaculate volume, but no spermatozoa in the ejaculate.


Finally, more semen may be produced than the normal amount of ejaculate for a man. This is what is known as hyperspermia.

In contrast to the low amount of semen, a high seminal volume is not associated with any pathology or alteration of fertility.

We consider a man to have hyperspermia when the amount of ejaculated seminal fluid is greater than 6 ml. As we have mentioned, it is not a cause of infertility but it is usually related to the large size of the seminal vesicles since these formations are responsible for more than 70% of the volume of ejaculate.

It may also be due to excessive days of abstinence or inflammation of these organs.

How to increase ejaculation volume?

The expulsion of a small amount of ejaculate can result from different aspects, both hormonal and anatomical. Obstruction of the ejaculatory ducts or androgen deficiency are some of the main causes.

Depending on the reason for the hypospermia, we will act accordingly to find a solution to increase the ejaculate volume. Therefore, there is no definitive or one-size-fits-all treatment.

If you want to know more about how you can increase sperm quality, we recommend that you access the following article: How is sperm quality analyzed and what can we do to improve it?

There are medications that can help, but it is generally recommended to avoid toxic abuse, such as tobacco or alcohol, and to eat a healthy, balanced diet. Drinking plenty of water and natural juices is recommended, as well as consuming fresh fruits and vegetables, due to their high content of vitamin C and antioxidants.

Zinc is also a highly recommended mineral due to its antioxidant properties, so it must be included in the diet. Some of the foods rich in zinc that can help increase the amount of ejaculate are oysters, beans, beef, or nuts.

It should be noted that these healthy habits may help in some men, but will hardly have any effect in the most severe cases. It is advisable to go to a fertility clinic if you’re still not pregnant after one year of unprotected sex.

Assisted procreation, as any other medical treatment, requires that you rely on the professionalism of the doctors and staff of the clinic you choose. Obviously, each clinic is different. Get now your Fertility Report, which will select several clinics for you out of the pool of clinics that meet our strict quality criteria. Moreover, it will offer you a comparison between the fees and conditions each clinic offers in order for you to make a well informed choice.

FAQs from users

How can sperm volume be increased?

By Carolina Cordero Rosales B.Sc. (embryologist).

There are no concrete actions to increase sperm volume. The right thing would be to redirect the question towards: how can semen quality be improved?

Seminal characteristics are specific to each male. However, there are certain factors that can modify the quality of the semen, causing it to increase or decrease.

Factors that diminish seminal quality are: tobacco, alcohol, drugs, a bad diet, a very stressful life rhythm, continuous and direct exposure to radiation or chemical agents harmful to health.

In order to improve seminal quality the right thing is to lead a healthy way of life:

  • Balanced and healthy food (encourage the regular consumption of foods rich in antioxidants)
  • Maintain an adequate weight (excess weight is negative for seminal quality)
  • Maintain a low-moderate stress level
Imagen: Care to increase and improve seminal volume

However, there are pathologies such as agenesis of vas deferens, infections in glands such as seminal vesicles or prostate, etc. that can reduce the volume of an ejaculate, and therefore it is very important to consult a specialist.

Is a natural pregnancy possible with low ejaculate volume?

By Gustavo Daniel Carti M.D. (gynecologist).

The decrease in ejaculate volume is called hypospermia and this happens when the volume of seminal fluid is below 1.5 ml. Among the most frequent causes of hypospermia is the age of the male, prostate surgery, inflammatory processes of the pelvis, and the male reproductive system.

Imagen: Natural pregnancy with low semen volume

Sometimes hypospermia is accompanied by a decrease in the concentration of sperm (oligozoospermia), which significantly reduces the chances of achieving a natural pregnancy and will require assisted reproduction treatments.

Is it a serious problem if the ejaculation volume decreases and normal values are not restored after prolonged abstinence?

By Rebeca Reus BSc, MSc (embryologist).

In cases where the descent is very drastic, it is best to go to a specialist to rule out any alteration in the ejaculatory ducts.

It will be necessary to evaluate if all the glands that participate in seminal production are well or if on the contrary simply the seminal characteristics have changed without implying alterations.

Is low ejaculate volume a cause of male infertility if all other semen parameters are within normal range?

By Álvaro Martínez Moro B.Sc., M.Sc. (embryologist).

A male ejaculate volume of less than 1.5 mL may be associated with male infertility if it is an impediment to pregnancy. However, if all other seminal parameters are within normal range, male fertility should not be compromised.
Read more

What factors can influence semen volume?

By Claudia Flores M.D. (gynaecologist).

Semen volume values considered normal by the World Health Organisation are between 1.5 and 6 mL. However, sometimes the semen volume can be lower or higher, known as hypospermia and hyperspermia respectively.
Read more

Is the ejaculation volume always the same?

By Rebeca Reus BSc, MSc (embryologist).

No. Although it is approximately equal in volume, it varies between different men and even in the same man. For example, factors such as days of abstinence may cause changes in seminal volume.

The fact that one day the ejaculate is of low volume should not be cause for concern.

Suggested for you

As we have seen, the seminal volume is analyzed by means of the seminogram. If you want to know more about this test, we recommend that you read the following article: What is a basic seminogram and how is it done step by step?

If you want to know how to interpret the results correctly, you will find more information here: How to interpret the results of the seminogram and their normal values.

We make a great effort to provide you with the highest quality information.

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Brent M Hanson, Kenneth I Aston, Tim G Jenkins, Douglas T Carrell, James M Hotaling. The impact of ejaculatory abstinence on semen analysis parameters: a systematic review. J Assist Reprod Genet. 2018 Feb;35(2):213-220 (View)

Carol Sukhn, Johnny Awwad, Akram Ghantous, Ghazi Zaatari. Associations of Semen Quality With Non-Essential Heavy Metals in Blood and Seminal Fluid: Data From the Environment and Male Infertility (EMI) Study in Lebanon. J Assist Reprod Genet. 2018 Sep;35(9):1691-1701. doi: 10.1007/s10815-018-1236-z (View)

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FAQs from users: 'How can sperm volume be increased?', 'Is a natural pregnancy possible with low ejaculate volume?', 'Is it a serious problem if the ejaculation volume decreases and normal values are not restored after prolonged abstinence?', 'Is low ejaculate volume a cause of male infertility if all other semen parameters are within normal range?', 'What factors can influence semen volume?' and 'Is the ejaculation volume always the same?'.

Read more

Authors and contributors

 Álvaro  Martínez Moro
Álvaro Martínez Moro
B.Sc., M.Sc.
Álvaro Martínez Moro has a degree in Biology from the University of Granada and a Masters in Advanced Biotechnology from the University of A Coruña. He also holds his own Masters in Human Reproduction from the Complutense University of Madrid and another in Medical Genetics from the University of Valencia. In addition, he is a postgraduate specialist in Clinical Genetics from the University of Alcalá de Henares. More information about Álvaro Martínez Moro
 Carolina Cordero Rosales
Carolina Cordero Rosales
Bachelor's Degree in Biology from the University of Alcalá. Many years of experience working as an embryologist, and currently she continues expanding her professional career at Clínica Tambre (Madrid, Spain). More information about Carolina Cordero Rosales
License: 18942-M
 Claudia Flores
Claudia Flores
Claudia Flores is currently a specialist in Human Reproduction at the Ovoclinic Seville clinic. Dr. Flores studied medicine in Uruguay and obtained her degree in Spain. Subsequently, Dr. Flores completed a Master's degree in Human Reproduction at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos in Madrid. More information about Claudia Flores
Licence: 411109126
 Gustavo Daniel  Carti
Gustavo Daniel Carti
Dr. Gustavo Daniel Carti has a degree in medicine and specialized in obstetrics and gynecology from the University of Buenos Aires. More information about Gustavo Daniel Carti
Licence number: 07/0711274
 Marta Barranquero Gómez
Marta Barranquero Gómez
B.Sc., M.Sc.
Graduated in Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences by the University of Valencia (UV) and specialized in Assisted Reproduction by the University of Alcalá de Henares (UAH) in collaboration with Ginefiv and in Clinical Genetics by the University of Alcalá de Henares (UAH). More information about Marta Barranquero Gómez
License: 3316-CV
 Rebeca Reus
Rebeca Reus
BSc, MSc
Degree in Human Biology (Biochemistry) from the Pompeu Fabra University (UPF). Official Master's Degree in Clinical Analysis Laboratory from the UPF and Master’s Degree about the Theoretical Basis and Laboratory Procedures in Assisted Reproduction from the University of Valencia (UV). More information about Rebeca Reus
Adapted into english by:
 Romina Packan
Romina Packan
inviTRA Staff
Editor and translator for the English and German edition of inviTRA. More information about Romina Packan

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