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A viewer on social media asks The Doctors if he is trying to have a baby with his wife, will taking testosterone improve his fertility. The Doctors invite board-certified urologist Dr. Aaron Spitz to answer this viewers question. “Taking testosterone is about as helpful as cutting off your own testicles!” Meaning… no!
Both sperm and testosterone are produced in the testicles. The pituitary gland, located behind the eyeballs, secretes a hormone that stimulates the testicles to make both sperm and testosterone. When you give your body additional testosterone, in any form, the pituitary gland is tricked and stops telling the testicles to make their own sperm and testosterone.
Dr. Spitz says the good news is, this can be reversible. However, orthopedic surgeon Dr. Levi Harrison asks about his patients who are professional bodybuilders who often go through challenges to conceive with their wives, what is the timeline for their bodies to stop the negative feedback loop and have the pituitary gland increase testosterone? Dr. Spitz says that for men who have been juicing to a point where their testosterone levels are multiple levels higher than normal, sperm counts may never come back and if they do, it may take a year or two and come back to very minimal levels.
Plastic surgeon Dr. Andrew Ordon asks “What can you do to improve the quality of your swimmers?” Dr. Spitz says exercise and a healthy diet with lots of produce helps. He points out that in some situations men are born or develop conditions that affect sperm count such as varicocele, where there are excess veins around the testicles so they make the temperature on the testicles too warm. This can be surgically corrected.
OB/GYN Dr. Nita Landry points out that while many people assume infertility is a female issue, one-third of the time it’s female, one-third it’s male, and one-third it’s a combination of both or they don’t know what it is. What we do know is that taking extra testosterone is definitely not the answer!