What Is An Optimal Sperm Count?

What Is An Optimal Sperm Count?

zYour Trak System conveniently categorizes your sperm as Low, Moderate, or Optimal for pregnancy.  To help you understand what these results mean, let’s dive into the science and statistics behind fertility population research.

Low (less than 15 M/mL)

 

Low Trak ResultThe World Health Organization (WHO) frequently conducts population research and issues clinical recommendations for many public health conditions, including male fertility and sperm parameters which they most recently published in 2010. (By the way, the current WHO laboratory semen analysis manual is only 287 pages long if you ever feel like losing a Saturday).  

The 2010 study looked at semen analysis results from over 4,500 men around the world and determined that 15 M/mL is the “5th percentile sperm concentration among men who successfully fathered children within the past 12 months.”  

Friendly math refresher: "percentiles"

Percentile refers to the percentage of the population that has a result less than yours.  For example, “15 M/mL is the 5th percentile of recent fathers” means that only 5% of fertile men have a sperm concentration below 15 M/mL, and thus 95% of fertile men have a higher concentration.

So what?  To statistics nerds like us, the 5th percentile and 95th percentile hold special meaning in defining population distributions.  Specifically for male fertility, this means that men who have a sperm concentration below 15 M/mL have a high statistical likelihood of having fertility problems.  For this reason you may also see 15 M/mL referred to as the clinical “cutoff” for subfertility.

Again, having a result below 15 M/mL does not mean you can’t get pregnant. It just means statistically your chances are low.

So what should you do if you consistently see low test results? We recommend consulting a urologist specializing in male reproductive health for a medical evaluation and guidance.  See our online guide for more info about male fertility evaluations, and click here to find a specialist in your area.

Optimal (> 55 M/mL)

Optimal Trak ResultYes, we realize we’re going out of order.  But to get a better understanding of Moderate results it’s best to first understand the Optimal range. A 2002 study of 942 couples who got pregnant naturally found that the time to pregnancy decreased as sperm concentrations increased up to 55 M/mL.  Above 55 M/mL there was no difference in time to pregnancy - the pregnancy rate “plateaud”.

Why is this important?  Remember that sperm concentration is only one semen parameter that influences male fertility.  But the data suggests that if sperm concentration is high enough it statistically reduces the influence of other sperm parameters.  More is better.  More is “optimal”.

By the way, according to the same WHO study, 55 M/mL falls at approximately the 40th percentile among fertile men.  The “elite” 95th percentile value is 213 M/mL.  That’s a lot of sperm.

Moderate (15 - 55 M/mL)

Moderate Trak ResultTrak is built to help you take personalized steps to improve your results, strive for the Optimal range, and start your family.  You guessed it - the “Moderate” range accounts for everything in between: above the WHO 5th percentile threshold, but below the Optimal value for conception.  

Let’s get started!

 

See where he stands

Trak Fertility Testing SystemThe new Trak Fertility Testing System allows him to track his sperm count from the comfort of home and gives personalized tips to try to improve his count.

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