Aspermia is a medical term used to refer to a condition that affects certain men in which they experience a disordered ejaculation that lacks semen. This condition can usually occur due to two reasons. The first reason may be due to total lack of ejaculation and the second reason could be as a result of ejaculating into the bladder (also called retrograde ejaculation). The failure of a man to ejaculate could either be termed as congenital anorgasmia (primary lifelong) or secondary anorgasmia (acquired condition). Under normal circumstances in a fertile man, sperms are usually produced in the testes. It is the sperms produced in the testes that usually come out of the epididymis moving through the vas deferens. It is at the prostate gland that the sperms mix with secretions from the seminal vesicles, prostate itself and Cowper’s gland to form what is referred to as semen that is released when ejaculating.
The Causes of Aspermia
Aspermia is caused by two conditions which are retrograde ejaculation and obstruction of the ejaculatory duct.
How Retrograde Ejaculation Occurs?
In retrograde ejaculation instead of the semen going out of the body through the urethra, it streams into the bladder. This often occurs as a result of bladder sphincter malfunctioning occasioned by weak muscles and distorted nerve responses in the sphincter muscles.
Below are some reasons that are associated with aspermia caused as a result of:
1. Retrograde Ejaculation
- Due to prostate or testicular surgery.
- Nerves damaged due to disease.
- Due to diseases such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis, injury to the spinal cord.
- As a result of medications especially those used to treat tumors of the prostate, anti-hypertension drugs, antipsychotic drugs or antidepressants.
2. Ejaculatory Duct Obstruction
- Congenital cyst found within the ejaculatory ducts.
- Complications of the prostate such as its inflammation, or tuberculosis.
- STIs such as Chlamydia may also cause it.
Symptoms of Aspermia
Among the conditions associated with causing male infertility, aspermia is usually very rare. It often has very few symptoms which are usually obvious. The following are symptoms of aspermia:
- Lack of semen at ejaculation, having orgasms that are dry.
- Experience of hazy urine at the peak of sexual intercourse caused by leakage of sperm into the bladder due to obstruction.
- Feeling of pelvic pain after ejaculation.
- Very little amounts of semen if there is.
- Inability to make babies due to lack of sperms that can impregnate the woman.
Aspermia diagnosis is usually dependent on the factors that cause it. When one visits a physician the physician will conduct the following tests:
- Physical examination; proper examination of the genitalia and the testicles in particular will be performed by the physician. The tubules and the vas deferens will be checked to confirm they are okay.
- History of the affected person; the medical history of the affected person will have to be assessed by the physician to get to know exactly what comes next.
- Blood tests; tests will be conducted on the follicle-stimulating hormone and testosterone. It must be noted that a reduction of testosterone also causes significant decrease of semen.
- Radioimmunoassay; this is a kind of test that is done to ascertain the amounts of sex hormones in the blood. In most cases where aspermia is there the test usually finds out that follicle-stimulating hormone and testosterone levels have plummeted and on the other side the level of luteinizing hormone is increased.
- Wright-Giemma stain; it is a test done to check the morphology of the sperm of a suspected aspermia patient.
- Microscope test of the sperm; is also a very important part of aspermia diagnosis.
- Chemical analysis of the semen; in this test a man with aspermia will have semen that has low ph and also with decreased concentration of fructose.
- Studies by imaging; includes magnetic resonance imaging and transcretal ultrasound usually done to ascertain if there may be any possible damage to the prostate gland or the seminal vesicle.
Treatment for Aspermia
Aspermia treatment is usually centered on alleviating the causes of the condition. Under normal treatment circumstances it is often treated by conventional means but when the condition is more serious then operation may be considered.
Below are some of the treatment options for aspermia:
- Oral therapy; in this therapy the neck of the bladder is constricted during ejaculation so semen can flow directly into the urethra. Drugs that help to restore the work of the damaged nerve are administered.
- Assisted reproduction; is a procedure done when the affected man wants to have babies. The procedure involves several ways to achieve it, they may include the following; intrauterine insemination, in Vitro fertilization (IVF), and bladder sperm harvest.
- Surgery; in severe cases of aspermia surgery may be the best option to try and correct it.