Objective: To investigate whether sperm density (D) and morphology (M) deteriorated in the last 18 years (from 1982 to 1999) in a South-East area of Sicily (Catania, Siracusa and Ragusa provinces). The area of residence of this subjects studied is a strong consumer in fumigants and pesticides in the hot-house factories and thus the present study can be useful to examine a possible negative impact of these compounds on sperm parameters through a long-term monitoring of an apparently healthy population. Materials and Methods: Sperm D and M were retrospectively analysed in 716 men (median age 29, range 22-43 years) referring to the Andrology Center of the University of Catania. The subjects were subdivided in 2 groups: the first included subjects who fathered occasionally (n=467), the second was formed by healthy volunteers consulting as possible donors (n=109) and to ckeck their fertility (n=140). Results: During the study period of 18 years, both sperm D and M (in terms of percentage of normal forms) showed significant (p<0.01) time-dependent indirect correlations (r=-0.12 for D and r=-0.29 for NF). D exhibited two significant peak values in the years 1982, 1983 and 1994 respectively, followed by two periods (years 1984-1986, and 1995-1996) with not significantly declined values and then with values significantly lower than the above peak values in the years 1987, 1989, 1992 as well as in the period 1997-1999. The M registered a progressive decline, statistically significant in the years 1988 and 1994 in comparison to the preceding years. A further significant decrease in sperm M was registered, in comparison to the periods 1982-1987 and 1988-1994, in the period 1995-1999. Conclusion: Our data showed a temporal decline of sperm parameters in South-East area of the Sicilia, from 1982 to 1999, in fertile men and occasional healthy subjects or donors. These data confirmed the sperm deterioration registered in Europe. The results might be influenced by time-varying body of users of referring Andrology Center (i.e. oligozoospermic subjects preferring ART program have approached again our Center in the last years from the activation of our Unit of ART), and/or by varying temporal changes in the levels of environmental/occupational gonadotoxic factors.
|Titolo:||Sperm characteristics in fertile men and healthy men of the South-East Sicily from year 1982 to 1999|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2003|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|