Routine assessment of occupational exposure and its relation to semen quality in infertile men: a cross-sectional study

Concerns about the detrimental effects of occupational and environmental exposure on male reproductive function have been raised by reports of declining sperm quality over the last decades. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between altered semen parameters and exposure to occupational risk factors as assessed by questionnaire. The authors conducted a cross-sectional questionnaire-based study among a population of 2122 men who underwent andrological investigation for couple infertility. All participants were interviewed and their semen samples were analysed. Information about medical history and occupational exposure was used to classify participants into exposed and unexposed groups. Exposure to pesticides was associated with a significantly higher risk of asthenozoospermia (adjusted odds ratio [OR] = 1.6; 95% CI, 1.0-2.4) and necrozoospermia (OR = 2.6; 95% CI, 1.4-4.7). Exposure to cement was found to be correlated with a higher risk of oligozoospermia (OR = 1.1; 95% CI, 0.9-1.4). There was no association between semen impairment and exposure to solvents, excess heat, or mechanical vibrations. The authors concluded that an association was found between self-reported occupational exposure and altered semen parameters. These results support the usefulness of questionnaires for routine assessment and management of occupational exposures in infertile men.

Authors: Daoud S, Sellami A, Bouassida M, Kebaili S, Ammar Keskes L, Rebai T, Chakroun Feki N. ;Full Source: Turkish Journal of Medical Science. 2017 Jun 12;47(3):902-907. doi: 10.3906/sag-1605-47. ;