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Asian J Androl. 2013 Mar;15(2):221-5. doi: 10.1038/aja.2012.118. Epub 2012 Dec 31.

Does alcohol have any effect on male reproductive function? A review of literature.

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1
Department of Medical and Pediatric Sciences, University of Catania, Catania, Italy. sandrolavignera@email.it

Abstract

Although alcohol is widely used, its impact on the male reproductive function is still controversial. Over the years, many studies have investigated the effects of alcohol consumption on sperm parameters and male infertility. This article reviews the main preclinical and clinical evidences. Studies conducted on the experimental animal have shown that a diet enriched with ethanol causes sperm parameter abnormalities, a number of alterations involving the reproductive tract inhibition, and reduced mouse oocyte in vitro fertilization rate. These effects were partly reversible upon discontinuation of alcohol consumption. Most of the studies evaluating the effects of alcohol in men have shown a negative impact on the sperm parameters. This has been reported to be associated with hypotestosteronemia and low-normal or elevated gonadotropin levels suggesting a combined central and testicular detrimental effect of alcohol. Nevertheless, alcohol consumption does not seem to have much effect on fertility either in in vitro fertilization programs or population-based studies. Finally, the genetic background and other concomitant, alcohol consumption-related conditions influence the degree of the testicular damage. In conclusion, alcohol consumption is associated with a deterioration of sperm parameters which may be partially reversible upon alcohol consumption discontinuation.

PMID:
23274392
PMCID:
PMC3739141
DOI:
10.1038/aja.2012.118
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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