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Procreation – A roll of the dice?

If you watch Eric Bana and Robert Duvall in the drama film “Lucky You” you will understand this post better. Shot in Las Vegas, the film is about poker and the hand that you are dealt. The players have cards and turn cards and then there is the “river” which refers to the final turn card on the table. Time and again, winning is about having the best combination.

The “World Health Organization” came out with its 5th recommendation on reference values for “Semen Analysis” in 2010. Here, the minimum count required to be fitted into the fertile category was 15million/ml. The important thing to remember is that this number has been on the decline over the years, which tells us that male fertility issues are on the rise. Semen/sperm quality usually serves as a barometer for Male fertility. Men who come to my clinic walk in clutching a fat file which contains Semen Analysis reports repeated many times over. They are often concerned with issues like “The counts which were high two weeks back have dropped this week”!! “Why is this happening in spite of all the medicines that I am taking?”

Data tells us that even in fertile men “Sperm Counts wax and wane” and this is a normal phenomenon. Depending on where the analysis is done and more importantly when the analysis is done, sperm numbers vary. At one point in time you will be a fertile guy transitioning over a period of time to sub fertile for no apparent reason.
In poker, if you hold all the aces in your hand then the turn cards may not matter in a few games. If your hand is OK, the turn may sometimes help. As in poker, for a pregnancy to occur, the sperm and the egg both matter. If the sperms (cards in hand) are of great quality, then the egg may be just OK and a pregnancy can occur. If the sperms are not great, then, the eggs (the turn card), have to be superlative.

Laying too much emphasis on numbers only adds to the stress. A good looking sperm need not have the best DNA. In poker, if you don’t fancy your chances you fold. In a less than ideal world, “One which would go to great lengths to remind you of your fertility status” folding is not an option….
You got to kill it!!!

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