Treatment of Teratozoospermia – Can It Be Cured?

By BSc, MSc (embryologist) and BA, MA (fertility counselor).
Last Update: 11/28/2018

Teratozoospermia can be present from birth, in which case it is due to genetic causes, or acquired over time due to hormonal imbalances or trauma. Thus, depending on the cause, the treatment of choice varies.

When teratozoospermia is congenital, finding a cure is considerably difficult. And the same applies when it is a side effect of cancer treatments. Particularly in severe cases of teratozoospermia, turning to Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) is necessary.

Conversely, when a man has mild-to-moderate teratozoospermia, there exist certain natural remedies or drugs that can help to boost sperm quality.

Natural treatment

Given that discovering the specific cause of teratozoospermia is highly difficult, determining the best treatment option to correct sperm morphology is complicated as well.

Nevertheless, leading a healthy lifestyle can have a very positive impact on sperm morphology. For this reason, it is possible to see improvements in just a few months.

The ideal treatment is one that guarantees an adequate sperm maturation during spermatogenesis. What follows are some tips to help maintain healthy habits that ensure sperm formation occurs successfully.

Diet

A balanced diet improves the overall state of health. Moreover, vitamins and antioxidants present in some foods provide many benefits for sperm quality.

These are some key food components that every man who wishes to improve his sperm quality should add to his diet:

Selenium
This mineral is found in Brazil nuts, nuts, tuna, beef meat, chicken meat, eggs, and cheese. It should be taken in small proportions, since it can turn out to be toxic.
Vitamin C
Present in spinach, mandarins, strawberries, and tomatoes. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that favors the iron absorption process.
Zinc
Oysters, clams, and red meat contain this mineral. Zinc is essential for the proper functioning of enzymes, responsible for providing the body with energy.
Omega-3 fatty acids
In oily fish and seafood. It should be added to one’s diet because the human body itself cannot synthesize it. It has multiple benefits on the cardiovascular, nervous, and immune systems, among others.

Olive oil

Olive oil is an essential ingredient of the Mediterranean diet. Moreover, it has excellent reproductive benefits thanks to its high content in oleic acid.

Oleic acid contributes to reducing the levels of LDL cholesterol or the “bad” cholesterol, which can accumulate in the testes, affecting sperm production.

Olive oil also helps increase the levels of HDL cholesterol (the “good” cholesterol), preventing cardiovascular and brain complications.

In short, olive oil is an ally when it comes to fighting against male infertility, namely teratozoospermia.

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Testicular temperature

Prolonged exposure to heat may damage your testicles, affecting sperm production and causing sperm abnormalities.

In other words, males with infertility issues should follow these recommendations:

  • Do not place your laptop on your lap
  • Avoid regular sauna visits
  • Wear boxer briefs and loose clothing
  • Avoid long-term low-to-intensive cycling training

By keeping the testicles cool, they can recover their normal function, and your sperm quality will improve eventually.

Effect of toxins

Exposure to certain common toxic substances on a daily basis can become highly damaging for a man’s reproductive health without even realizing.

Some examples include tobacco, street drugs, marijuana smoke, pesticides, chemical compounds, and excessive alcoholic drink consumption. All these substances can cause deformities in sperm.

So, in conclusion, one should avoid these bad habits at all costs, especially if trying to conceive.

Vitamin supplementation

In some patients with teratozoospermia, urologists recommended that they take vitamin supplements to improve sperm quality faster.

The most common treatment option are vitamin supplements rich in antioxidants.

Antioxidants help diminish the levels of oxidative stress spermatozoa are exposed to. Oxidative stress damages sperm cells, and causes sperm DNA fragmentation.

Some examples of dietary supplements that are beneficial for sperm morphology are vitamin E or essential amino acids like L-carnitine. Treatment with vitamin E is advisable in males undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy, too, as it is a powerful antioxidant.

Also, maca root powder is considered highly beneficial due to the multiple benefits it can provide to sperm.

One should note that these natural remedies cannot cure infertility, especially if sperm parameters are severely affected.

FAQs from users

Can abnormal sperm morphology cause miscarriage?

By Zaira Salvador BSc, MSc (embryologist).

In principle, poor sperm morphology doesn’t lead to miscarriage once the egg has been fertilized and the embryo has attached to the womb. However, if the sperm contain a genetic abnormality, miscarriage is likely to occur.

Can severe teratozoospermia be cured?

By Zaira Salvador BSc, MSc (embryologist).

If the amount of normal sperm is fewer than 5%, the truth is that the chances for a natural pregnancy to occur are considerably low, and improving this situation with a natural remedy or medications is unlikely, too. Nonetheless, following healthier habits could improve it eventually.

On the other hand, if teratozoospermia is linked to other pathologies, such as varicocele, it is possible that the semen analysis report shows improved results after undergoing surgery to treat the varicocele.

Can acupuncture help with teratozoospermia?

By Zaira Salvador BSc, MSc (embryologist).

Yes, according to some studies. Broadly speaking, acupuncture increases pregnancy rates in cases of idiopathic or unexplained infertility. Also, there is proof that is can improve sperm quality in cases of oligospermia, asthenospermia, and teratozoospermia.

Can eating more berries improve sperm quality?

By Zaira Salvador BSc, MSc (embryologist).

Yes, berries (including blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries) contain antioxidant pigments, in addition to absorbing free radicals of oxygen. In other words, including berries in your diet is a good option to improve or protect sperm quality.

Some studies have shown that pigments found in the skin and seeds of berries have multiple medicinal properties, including flavonoids, anthocyanins, tannins, and other phytochemicals.

In particular, blueberries, blackberries, lingonberries, and strawberries contain high amounts of vitamin C and other nutrients. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects cells from cell damage.

Suggested for you

When teratozoospermia is so severe that it prevents natural pregnancy, a man or couple may have no alternative but to undergo a fertility treatment to fulfill their dream of becoming parents. Get more info: Achieving Pregnancy with Teratozoospermia.

Oftentimes, the treatment to fix teratozoospermia is dependent on its causes. Read the following article to learn more: What Are the Causes of Teratozoospermia?

Our editors have made great efforts to create this content for you. By sharing this post, you are helping us to keep ourselves motivated to work even harder.

References

Auger J, Jouannet P, Eustache F. Another look at human sperm morphology. Hum Reprod. 2016;31(1):10-23.

Busetto GM, Agarwal A, Virmani A, Antonini G, Ragonesi G, Del Giudice F, Micic S, Gentile V, De Berardinis E. Effect of metabolic and antioxidant supplementation on sperm parameters in oligo-astheno-teratozoospermia, with and without varicocele: A double-blind placebo-controlled study. Andrologia. 2018;50(3).

Guo J. Thoughts and Approaches of Integrated Chinese and Western Medicine for the Treatment of Oligo-astheno-teratozoospermia. Chin J Integr Med. 2018;24(7):483-486.

Isidori A, Latini M, Romanelli F. Treatment of male infertility. Contraception. 2005;72(4):314-8.

FAQs from users: 'Can abnormal sperm morphology cause miscarriage?', 'Can severe teratozoospermia be cured?', 'Can acupuncture help with teratozoospermia?' and 'Can eating more berries improve sperm quality?'.

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Authors and contributors

 Zaira Salvador
Zaira Salvador
BSc, MSc
Embryologist
Bachelor's Degree in Biotechnology from the Technical University of Valencia (UPV). Biotechnology Degree from the National University of Ireland en Galway (NUIG) and embryologist specializing in Assisted Reproduction, with a Master's Degree in Biotechnology of Human Reproduction from the University of Valencia (UV) and the Valencian Infertility Institute (IVI) More information about Zaira Salvador
License: 3185-CV
Adapted into english by:
 Sandra Fernández
Sandra Fernández
BA, MA
Fertility Counselor
Bachelor of Arts in Translation and Interpreting (English, Spanish, Catalan, German) from the University of Valencia (UV) and Heriot-Watt University, Riccarton Campus (Edinburgh, UK). Postgraduate Course in Legal Translation from the University of Valencia. Specialist in Medical Translation, with several years of experience in the field of Assisted Reproduction. More information about Sandra Fernández

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