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Abstract

Volume 18, Issue 3 (May 2016) 18, 410–418; DOI:10.4103/1008-682X.175779

Male infertility: lifestyle factors and holistic, complementary, and alternative therapies

David F Yao, Jesse N Mills

Department of Urology, UCLA, 1260 15th St #1200, Santa Monica, CA 90404, USA

Correspondence: Prof. JN Mills (jnmills@mednet.ucla.edu)

04-Mar-2016

Abstract

While we may be comfortable with an allopathic approach to male infertility, we are also responsible for knowledge about lifestyle modifications and holistic, complementary, and alternative therapies that are used by many of our patients. This paper provides an evidence-based review separating fact from fiction for several of these therapies. There is sufficient literature to support weight reduction by diet and exercise, smoking cessation, and alcohol moderation. Supplements that have demonstrated positive effects on male fertility on small randomized controlled trial (RCT) include aescin, coenzyme Q 10 , glutathione, Korean red ginseng, L-carnitine, nigella sativa, omega-3, selenium, a combination of zinc and folate, and the Menevit antioxidant. There is no support for the use of Vitamin C, Vitamin E, or saffron. The data for Chinese herbal medications, acupuncture, mind-body practice, scrotal cooling, and faith-based healing are sparse or inconclusive.

Keywords: alcohol; antioxidants; caffeine; faith-based healing; male infertility; obesity; scrotal cooling; sperm; tobacco; traditional Chinese medicine

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