Acupuncture increases low sperm count in men
A study that assessed the effects of acupuncture treatment on sperm output in patients with low sperm density associated with a high scrotal temperature.
A total of 39 men were given acupuncture for a low sperm output. Based on 18 men with normal fertility (the control group), threshold scrotal skin temperature was set at 30.5oC, and temperatures above this were considered to be high.
Accordingly, 34 of the 39 participants in the experimental group initially had high scrotal skin temperature; the other five had normal values. Scrotal skin temperature and sperm concentration were measured before and after acupuncture treatment.
Following treatment, 17 of the 34 patients with hyperthermia, all of whom had genital tract inflammation, had normal scrotal skin temperature; in 15 of these 17 patients, sperm count increased. In the remaining 17 men with scrotal hyperthermia, neither scrotal skin temperature nor sperm concentration was affected by the treatment; however, 90% had high gonadotrophins or mixed aetiological factors.
The five patients with initially normal scrotal temperatures were not affected by the acupuncture treatment.
The researchers concluded that low sperm count in patients with inflammation of the genital tract seems to be associated with scrotal hyperthermia, which can be reversed with acupuncture treatment.
Siterman, et al. (2009) Success of acupuncture treatment in patients with initially low sperm output is associated with a decrease in scrotal skin temperature. Asian Journal of Andrology; 11: 200-8.