Male factor infertility affects one-third of the 7 million US couples struggling with infertility. While the conversation around this fact is increasing, in part due to all the new male fertility-related startups, there are still challenges to be overcome. Dr. R. John Aitken, Co-Director of the Priority Research Centre in Reproductive Science at the University of Newcastle, NSW, spoke about this topic at the recent American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) conference. During his talk, he identified three areas contributing to underdiagnosing male factor infertility.
1. Lack of Guidelines to Test for Male Factor Infertility
The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in disease prevention and evidence-based medicine. The Task Force works to improve the health of all Americans by making evidence-based recommendations about clinical preventive services.
This is the body that provides recommendations for BRCA risk assessment, diabetes screening, and folic acid supplementation, as an example.
Not a single recommendation exists for male fertility screening.