(DENVER) -- Among couples using assisted reproductive technology, a retrospective study reported on MedPage Today has shown an overweight male partner may reduce the chances of pregnancy.
Multiple factors were taken into account, such as the mother's body mass index. Then, researchers found every 5-unit increase in the father's body mass index was associated with a 28 percent decrease in the chances of pregnancy.
Dr. Zaher Merhi of Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center in New York City says there were no differences in the quality or concentration of sperm or day-three embryo quality between couples with an overweight male partner and those with a normal-weight male, some unknown factor must explain it. Merhi was speaking before the American Society for Reproductive Medicine in Denver.
The relationship may involve a factor that cannot be seen with a microscope at the embryo stage. It could be something like an increase in sperm DNA fragmentation, which has been demonstrated previously in obese men.
If further research confirms these findings, doctors may start counseling men as well as women about losing weight before undergoing in vitro fertilization.
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