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Volume 19, Issue 6 (November 2017) 19, 633–638; 10.4103/1008-682X.195240

Serum lipid profiles are associated with semen quality

Chin-Yu Liu1, Yu-Ching Chou2, Shyh-Hsiang Lin3, Sheng-Tang Wu4, Tai-Lung Cha4, Hong-I Chen4, 5, Chih-Wei Tsao4

1 Department of Nutritional Science, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City, Taiwan, China
2 School of Public Health, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan, China
3 School of Nutrition and Health Sciences, College of Nutrition, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan, China
4 Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, Tri-Service General Hospital, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan, China
5 Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan, Taiwan, China

Correspondence: Dr. CW Tsao (weisurger@gmail.com)

Date of Submission 28-Jul-2016 Date of Decision 26-Sep-2016 Date of Acceptance 08-Nov-2016 Date of Web Publication 13-Jan-2017


We aimed to explore the associations between different lipid profiles and semen quality in a large-scale general male population. Sperm concentration, total sperm motility, progressive motility, and normal sperm morphology of total 7601 participants were recorded. The association of these semen parameters with the triglyceride, total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, low-density lipoprotein, and very low-density lipoprotein of serum lipid profiles was analyzed. Sperm concentration was statistically positively correlated with triglyceride and very low-density lipoprotein (adjusted P = 0.001 and P = 0.005, respectively). Total sperm motility and progressive motility were statistically increased with increasing low-density lipoprotein and cholesterol levels (both adjusted P = 0.008 and P < 0.001, respectively). The similar J-shaped associations (high-low-low-high) were noted between individual lipid profile and normal sperm morphology, especially low-density lipoprotein and cholesterol with statistical significance (adjusted P = 0.017 and P = 0.021, respectively). The prevalence of abnormal total sperm motility and progressive motility was decreased in participants with high levels of cholesterol (P = 0.008 and P = 0.019, respectively), and the reverse J-shaped associations (low-high-high-low) were noted between high-density lipoprotein, triglyceride, very low-density lipoprotein, and the prevalence of abnormal normal sperm morphology (P = 0.010, P = 0.037, and P = 0.025, respectively). A high cholesterol level was associated with better sperm motility. Similar J-shaped associations were noted between all lipid profiles and normal sperm morphology; meanwhile, the reverse J-shaped trends were identified between them and abnormal normal sperm morphology prevalence.

Keywords: cholesterol; general population; lipoprotein; semen quality; triglyceride

Keywords: cholesterol; general population; lipoprotein; semen quality; triglyceride

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