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Urologist-andrologist: COVID-19 is found in the semen

As a new coronavirus infection affects male fertility? Can COVID-19 cause infertility? In an interview with RIA Novosti said a leading researcher of the Department of art of the fgbi "SMRC endocrinology" of Ministry of health of Russia, Director of the andrological group of the clinic of reproduction and genetics, NGC, urologist-andrologist Sergei Bogolyubov.

The virus is not so easy to get to the egg men, such as lungs or intestines. Contact only possible through the blood, and this can happen only in marked lesions of lung tissue, that is, in severe disease.

Currently published scientific data that show that a viremia (definition of virus in the blood) is rare. The testicle itself is arranged in such a way that bacteria and viruses are extremely difficult to get the internal environment of blood because gepatolentikuliarnaya barrier contains active antiviral protection.

According to the work of Chinese and American scientists, in semen of men recovered from the virus can be determined, both in the acute phase of the disease (about 15% of patients), and stage of recovery (8% of the surveyed). However, to date there is no data how long the virus can persist in semen after recovery. Of course, we need more extensive studies in this direction.

— Reliably say we can not yet. The cycle of spermatogenesis in men is 75 days. Too little time has passed for such assessments.The egg men running sophisticated security system, which initially prevents the penetration of immune cells into the lumen of the seminiferous tubule, where Mature sperm.

However, factors not directly related to the impact of the virus on cells of spermatogenesis (high fever, intoxication, antibiotics and antiviral drugs, hypoxia), have their negative effects on spermatogenesis.

— I must say that in the world there are viruses that, when injected into a human body, live in it for years and decades, for example, HIV, hepatitis C, herpes, cytomegalovirus.

In regards to the new coronavirus such information yet. However, all the coronaviruses, which had previously faced the people from the body completely eliminated (not detected). To date there is no information on the transfer of coronavirus sexually.

— This will say the decline in sexual desire, decrease in ejaculate volume and a decrease in the level of testosterone in the blood. In the study of blood, a decrease in inhibin B, which is produced by cells involved in spermatogenesis, increase in FSH, decrease in the volume of testicles, and pain in them during the illness.

In addition, can be pathospermia (changes in the semen analysis – reducing the number, motility and morphology).

— Fatigue after a viral infection leads to a decrease in libido (sexual desire). Here is an important period of rehabilitation, good nutrition, rest, exercise,fortified with vitamins and adequate sleep.

There is another point. In marked damage to the lung tissue it develops fibrosis, which reduces the lung's ability to oxygenate blood. It is known that in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have erectile dysfunction, and they are associated with hypoxia and decrease in functional volume of the lungs.

If the virus still affects the testicle, it can reduce the population of Leydig cells, which produce the main male hormone – testosterone. Meanwhile, a reduction in testosterone leads to sexual disorders, impaired quality of erection, metabolic disorders, obesity.

— Of course, necessary examination (inhibin B, FSH, testosterone, LH, TSH, semen analysis, MAR test, ultrasound of the scrotum with the definition of the volume of the testicles). But the assessment of reproductive function in men after infection COVID-19 is advantageously carried out not earlier than 3 months after recovery. If the identified violation, the repetition of the tests prescribed in 6 and 12 months after recovery.