Male hormonal testing can help doctors and couples determine what factors may be contributing to their inability to conceive. Contrary to what many people believe, infertility is not just “a woman’s problem”. Infertility affects men and women with almost equal frequency. Common factors contributing to male infertility are low sperm count, poor sperm motility, and abnormal semen levels or function. At the Center for Reproductive Health & Gynecology in Los Angeles, we offer several male hormonal assays at our Beverly Hills, Valencia, and Sherman Oaks locations to evaluate hormones essential to sperm production, including the follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone, and prolactin.
Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH) Tests
Both the luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) are essential for reproduction. The FSH stimulates the production of sperm and the LH stimulates the testes to secrete the male sex hormone, testosterone. High levels of FSH and LH can indicate a failure of testicular function that may not respond to hormone therapy. Low levels of FSH and LH may indicate that the testes are not receiving an adequate stimulatory message from the pituitary gland or hypothalamus, which can be improved with hormone therapies.
Testosterone, which is produced by the testes, stimulates sperm production and is required for sperm motility. A low sperm count may indicate a problem with testosterone levels. Thyroid dysfunction may also be present, although it is rarely a cause of male infertility.
A high prolactin level may result in an abnormal semen production. Treatment for elevated prolactin is both available and effective.