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Objectives The purpose of this paper was to analyze the relationship between the selected chemical air pollutants found in the Lublin Province and the semen parameters of men seeking fertility treatment for the first time. Material and Methods The study involved an analysis of semen sample test results obtained from male patients first reporting for fertility treatment in reproductive health centers in the Lublin Province, Poland. The data set comprises semen parameters of 13 148 men, and the number of samples in the reference period was 255–769 annually. Data on air pollution were obtained from the website of the Polish General Environmental Inspectorate and included selected chemical air pollutant levels, i.e., NO₂, SO₂, O₃, and PM₁₀. Results The mean PM₁₀ levels in the air increased, on average, by 0.65 μg/m₃ annually in 2000–2015 (p = 0.029); the mean levels of O₃, NO₂, SO₂ did not change significantly in the analyzed period. There were increasing trends in the mean sperm density and total sperm count of the subjects in 1992–2015 (p < 0.001). The mean percentage of sperm with normal morphology significantly decreased in the subsequent analysis periods: 1992–1998 (p = 0.001); 1999–2009 (p < 0.001); 2010–2015 (p = 0.001). A significant negative correlation was found between the ozone levels in the air in the Lublin Province and the percentage of sperm with normal morphology (r = –0.8311, p = 0.040). Conclusions Exposure to ozone in the air contributes to decreased percentages of sperm with normal sperm morphology. Over the years, there was an increasing trend in sperm density in the men first reporting for fertility treatment, and a decreasing trend in the percentage of sperm with normal morphology. Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2019;32(3):387–99
Posiadanie potomstwa jest najważniejszym celem biologicznym człowieka, warunkującym przetrwanie ludzkiego gatunku. Przyczyny męskiej niepłodności możemy podzielić na: przedjądrowe, jądrowe i pozajądrowe. Do czynników przedjądrowych zaliczamy zaburzenia sekrecji hormonów płciowych. Przyczyny jądrowe to: uszkodzenia struktury i czynności kanalików plemnikotwórczych. Czynniki pozajądrowe to: zaburzenia transportu plemników przez drogi wyprowadzające oraz brak zdolności plemników do zapłodnienia komórki jajowej. Znajomość czynników warunkujących obniżenie męskiej płodności stanowi klucz do podjęcia odpowiedniego leczenia pary starającej się o uzyskanie potomstwa.
Having children is the most important human biological objective, which determines the survival of the humankind. The causes of male infertility can be divided into pre-testicular, testicular and extra-testicular. The pre-testicular factors include the abnormal secretion of sex hormones, the testicular ones – damage to the structure and function of seminiferous tubules, while the extra-testicular ones – disturbances in the transport of spermatozoa through seminal ducts and the inability of spermatozoa to fertilise the egg cell. The knowledge of factors determining the impairment of male fertility is a key to administering the appropriate treatment of a couple trying to produce offspring.
Content available Male infertility and human environmental pollution
Introduction. Man is the only being that has created an artificial environment, or civilization. The development of civilization entails changes in the environment. The rapid growth of the impact of human economic activity has led to such changes that are able to threaten not only other living creatures but also themselves. Increasing environmental pollution are well-known factors negative influencing on human environment. Is now a global problem. Anthropogenic pollution contribute to the unfavorable demographic changes and grooving number of health problems of the population. Unfavourable demographic changes manifest themselves as not only increment in the number of deaths and malformations (defects in the reproductive organs), but also as decrement in the fertility rates being the consequence of increasing the growing problem of couples infertility. There is observed the increasing role of male factor in the couple infertility problem. In some developed countries its participation rate reaches 50%.Objective. The aim of the study is to assess the impact of environmental pollution on human development and reproductive function of male gonads.Material and methods. The study was carried out using the method of data analysis published in the works and scientific reports.Current state of knowledge. The paper presents information on identified environmental pollution with proven adverse effects on the development of the gonads and the their reproductive function. There are also known possible negative impacts of environmental pollution on carcinogenesis in male gonads.Wider awareness of the negative impact of environmental pollution and attempts put emphasis on primary prevention can give better long-term effects than increasing spending on the therapies of developmental disorders as well as gonadal dysfunctions symptoms including fertility problems.Conclusions.Among the environmental pollutants there are many chemicals adversely affecting the organogenesis as well as reproductive function of testicles.Many of these contaminants are pesticides or chemicals currently approved for use in agriculture and industry, including the food and cosmetics industry.Those chemicals, adversely affecting organogenesis and testicular generative function, are present in air, water and foods, packaged foods and everyday objects - including clothes (ingredients sponges), perfumes, creams and detergents.The increase in environmental pollution coincides with the deterioration of sperm quality and reduction in male infertility in highly civilized countries.Striving for continuous reduction of the environmental seems to be necessary to stop the growing problem of couples infertility.
Diagnosis of the fertilizing ability of a semen sample is important for consistently high reproductive efficiency. Disturbances in the organization of the genomic material in sperm nuclei can have a serious impact on the growth of the offspring, therefore a stable nuclear matrix is crucial for participation in embryonic development. Routine semen analysis investigates parameters such as sperm motility and morphology, but does not examine the nuclear DNA integrity of spermatozoa. It has been suggested that altered nuclear chromatin structure or damaged DNA in spermatozoa is implicated as a possible cause of increased infertility in males. Therefore, it is crucial to develop and use accurate and diagnostic tests, which may provide better prognostic capabilities than the standard sperm assessments. This article reviews and discusses some of the current techniques employed for evaluating chromatin structure or DNA damage in spermatozoa. These different techniques include the comet assay, sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA), acridine orange test (AOT), tritium-labelled 3H-actinomycin D (3H-AMD) incorporation assay, terminal TdT-mediated dUTP-nick-end labelling (TUNEL) assay, in-situ nick translation (ISNT) assay, DNA breakage detection-fluorescence in-situ hybridizations (DBD-FISH) assay and sperm chromatin dispersion (SCD) test. The aforementioned assays, which are considered independent measure of sperm quality, may help to detect subtle defects in the chromatin structure or DNA integrity, and thereby assist in semen quality assessment. The relationship between DNA damage and male infertility is also addressed.
Over the last 40 years, the quality of male semen, including the sperm count, has decreased. There are numerous reasons for this phenomenon, including occupational and environmental exposure to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead, mercury and arsenic. Food contaminated with mycotoxins and pesticides, the influence of industrial chemicals, cigarette smoking and endocrine factors are also of great significance. This paper discusses the problem based on the literature of the last few years on the role of physiologically occurring metals in semen and the effect that heavy metals have on decreasing male fertility.
Na przestrzeni ostatnich 40 lat spadła jakość nasienia męskiego, w tym liczba plemników. U podstaw tego zjawiska leży wiele przyczyn, wśród których wymienia się ekspozycję zawodową i środowiskową na metale ciężkie, na kadm, ołów, rtęć i arsen. Duże znaczenie ma również zanieczyszczona mykotoksynami i pestycydami żywność, wpływ chemikaliów przemysłowych, palenie papierosów i czynniki endokrynologiczne. Niniejsza praca stanowi omówienie problemu na podstawie piśmiennictwa z ostatnich kilku lat na temat roli metali fizjologicznie występujących w nasieniu oraz wpływu metali ciężkich na obniżenie płodności męskiej.
Content available Scrotal imaging
Pathological lesions within the scrotum are relatively rare in imaging except for ultrasonography. The diseases presented in the paper are usually found in men at the age of 15–45, i.e. men of reproductive age, and therefore they are worth attention. Scrotal ultrasound in infertile individuals should be conducted on a routine basis owing to the fact that pathological scrotal lesions are frequently detected in this population. Malignant testicular cancers are the most common neoplasms in men at the age of 20–40. Ultrasound imaging is the method of choice characterized by the sensitivity of nearly 100% in the differentiation between intratesticular and extratesticular lesions. In the case of doubtful lesions that are not classified for intra-operative verifi cation, nuclear magnetic resonance is applied. Computed tomography, however, is performed to monitor the progression of a neoplastic disease, in pelvic trauma with scrotal injury as well as in rare cases of scrotal hernias involving the ureters or a fragment of the urinary bladder.
Patologiczne zmiany w obrębie worka mosznowego są stosunkowo rzadko spotykane w badaniach obrazowych, z wyjątkiem ultrasonografii. Prezentowane choroby dotyczą najczęściej grupy mężczyzn w przedziale wiekowym 15–45 lat, czyli w wieku rozrodczym, dlatego zasługują na szczególną uwagę. U niepłodnych mężczyzn badanie ultrasonograficzne moszny powinno być wykonywane rutynowo, ponieważ w tej populacji częstość wykrywania zmian patologicznych w mosznie jest bardzo wysoka. Nowotwory złośliwe jąder należą do najczęstszych nowotworów występujących u mężczyzn w wieku 20–40 lat. Metodą diagnostyczną z wyboru jest badanie ultrasonograficzne, którego czułość w różnicowaniu zmian wewnątrzjądrowych i zewnątrzjądrowych wynosi prawie 100%. W diagnostyce niejednoznacznych zmian, niekwalifikujących się do weryfikacji operacyjnej, stosowany jest magnetyczny rezonans jądrowy. Tomografię komputerową natomiast wykorzystuje się w monitorowaniu zaawansowania choroby nowotworowej, w stanach pourazowych miednicy z udziałem urazu moszny oraz w rzadkich przypadkach przepuklin mosznowych zawierających moczowody lub fragment pęcherza moczowego.
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