A study led by the Valencian Infertility Institute (IVI) with more than 120,000 patients on the evolution of semen quality in the last 20 years reveals that patients from Madrid and the Basque Country present the greatest deterioration in sperm quality, in contrast to patients from other regions, whose semen quality has not been impaired in the period of time analyzed.
"IVI patients treated at our Madrid headquarters have gone from having around 200 million progressive motile sperm to around 48 at present," explains Dr. Nicolás Garrido, director of the IVI Foundation and supervisor of the study.
The study is based on the question of whether semen quality has worsened over the years, and the research led by IVI Bilbao and Fundación IVI revolves around its analysis. Dr. Garrido affirms that "this is the first study that compares this evolution at a regional level in Spain over the last two decades, in addition to having a sample of 120,000 patients", he explains.
The study supervisor explains to compare the dimension that the WHO manual, to establish the normal parameters of semen quality, has been carried out with a sample of less than 4,000 men from all over the world; "Our study sample is 30 times larger," he points out.
The patients from Madrid are followed by those from the Basque Country, with a decrease in semen quality of 70%; Canarias, with a drop of 47%; and Aragón, with a deterioration of 42% since the year 2000. “Although at the national level this study shows a general decrease in semen quality, the truth is that it fluctuates between the different regions. And it is that, paradoxically, autonomous communities such as Galicia or Catalonia have not seen their semen quality suffer in the years analysed”, points out Dr. Garrido.
However, from the IVI they remember that IVI is a world leader in the treatment of infertility, so "the most complex cases come to our clinics to solve their reproductive problems. This study is not carried out on men from the general public, but in infertile patients”, adds Dr. Garrido.
The work will be presented at the next IVIRMA Congress, one of the most important meetings in the world in the field of reproductive medicine, which takes place every two years and will be held in Malaga from April 20 to 22 of this year.