SpermCheck technology coming to homes soon


Infertility affects about one in ten couples worldwide. With so much focus on women’s infertility issues, it is perhaps surprising to some to discover the source of infertility is split equally between men and women.

A new home test kit is designed to help men determine if their sperm count is in the normal range or if it is low or very low. The key to the kit’s success is that it seeks out a protein in sperm discovered by University of Virginia Health System cell biologist John C. Herr, PhD.

The system, called SpermCheck Fertility, recently underwent clinical and practical consumer studies to determine its accuracy and ease of use in the general market. The results are reported in the March 2010 issue of Human Reproduction.

SpermCheck Fertility takes the technology of SpermCheck Vasectomy a step further. SpermCheck Vasectomy is a system also invented by Herr and previously cleared for use by the FDA. By measuring sperm levels at 20 million sperm per milliliter and 5 million sperm per milliliter, Herr says men can determine if they have normal levels of sperm from the comfort - and privacy - of their own homes. Many women would recognize the format of the test as it mirrors pregnancy tests. Lines become colored or revealed based the number of sperm found per milliliter.

The system has been cleared for use in Europe and is being reviewed by the FDA in the States.

“The SpermCheck Fertility test is designed as a first line assay for use by couples who suspect infertility. The test is also use for men of any age who simply want to now if their sperm count is in the normal range. After reading the results couples can determine whether to seek comprehensive clinical evaluation of the male partner’s fertility status,” Herr explained. “The self test could save money and time for couples struggling with infertility by identifying which partner may need further evaluation.”

Source: University of VA Health System, Medical News Today


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