There are many factors that can determine whether or not someone has a problem with infertility. Your environment plays a role, as does your lifestyle. There are also factors you can’t necessarily control, such as whether or not you had an undescended testicle at birth and your hormones. Medications and hormones are two of the things that can impact your fertility.
What kinds of medications and hormones can impact your sperm?
Nearly any medication can affect your sperm production. If you’re trying to conceive with your partner, it’s important to disclose all the medicines you’re taking and even medicines you’ve taken previously to your doctor. This will help give your doctor more information about your infertility. Medications that can affect fertility include the following:
- Anabolic steroids. These are artificial versions of the hormone testosterone, not the same form as corticosteroids, which have a wide variety of uses in medicine.
- Calcium channel blockers. These medications could be used to treat high blood pressure or migraines.
- If you’ve been treated for cancer or another medical condition with chemotherapy, this could affect your fertility.
- Used to control seizures in people with epilepsy.
- Minocycline and Tetracycline. Antibiotics that could affect fertility.
- An anti-inflammatory medication used for a variety of conditions, including autoimmune diseases.
Remember, this isn’t a complete list. Any medication has the ability to impact your sperm production. Talk with your doctor about your medications and if one or several of them could be impacting your fertility.
The male sex hormone testosterone plays an important role in sperm production. Improper hormone production is one of the less common causes of infertility, but regardless, your doctor will likely want to rule out this possible cause.
If hormone production is found to play a role in your infertility, there could be an underlying cause, such as a tumor or problems with the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland is responsible for producing sufficient amounts of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) as well as luteinizing hormone (LH), both of which play a role in sperm and testosterone production.
Treatment for problems with hormone production when it comes to fertility could include medication, hormone replacement therapy, or surgery, if needed.
Other Drugs and Toxins That Affect Infertility
Although not considered medications, recreational drugs can have a big impact on your fertility. These include alcohol (even a couple of drinks a day is enough to impact your sperm production), tobacco usage (whether smoking or chewing tobacco), marijuana, and other illegal drugs such as heroin, cocaine, and methadone. It’s best if you avoid all these things while trying to conceive.
Your environment also plays a big role in your fertility. Toxins such as pesticides and chemicals such as those found in conventional home cleaners or even on work sites are dangerous for your fertility. Try to minimize your exposure to toxins while trying to conceive with your partner. This could mean examining your environment for unnecessary chemical exposure, but it also means minimizing your alcohol intake, quitting smoking, and getting help for substance abuse, should you need it.
Talk with your urologist about the medications you’re taking and hormones that could affect your fertility. By addressing these potential causes, you can help increase your sperm production as well as the quality of your sperm and have a natural conception with your partner!