Living and Loving - - PREGNANCY & BIRTH -

Q| I am a 43-year-old male and was di­ag­nosed with di­a­betes in 2010. Since then, I have taken reg­u­lar med­i­ca­tion to man­age my con­di­tion. In the same year as my di­ag­no­sis, my wife gave birth to our first child. How­ever, we have been try­ing to fall preg­nant again for five years without suc­cess. Could this be due to me be­ing di­a­betic?

A The fact that you have not con­ceived in five years is sig­nif­i­cant, and you could have sec­ondary in­fer­til­ity. You need to be eval­u­ated as a cou­ple, get a di­ag­no­sis and for­mu­late a man­age­ment plan.

Di­a­betes is known to be a cause of erec­tile dys­func­tion and, there­fore, the con­di­tion has an im­pact on fer­til­ity. Re­sults of re­search on the ef­fect of di­a­betes on sperm count and qual­ity are con­flict­ing, but re­cent stud­ies have shown that un­con­trolled di­a­betes may have a neg­a­tive ef­fect on sperm.

Peo­ple with type 2 di­a­betes are of­ten over­weight and there is an as­so­ci­a­tion be­tween obe­sity and male in­fer­til­ity. You should en­sure that your di­a­betes is well con­trolled, that you fol­low a healthy diet and that your weight is within a nor­mal range.

The next step is to have a spermiogram (mi­cro­scopic ex­am­i­na­tion of a sperm sam­ple) done to de­ter­mine whether a sperm prob­lem is present.

Dr Marienus Trouw, ob­ste­tri­cian, gy­nae­col­o­gist and fer­til­ity spe­cial­ist

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