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Minerva Endocrinologica 2006 December;31(4):263-72

language: English, Italian

Mono or bilateral inflammatory postmicrobial prostato-vesciculo-epididymitis: differences in semen parameters and reactive oxygen species production

La Vignera S. 1, Calogero A. E. 1 , Cannizzaro M. A. 2, Vicari E. 1

1 Unit of Endocrinology, Andrology and Internal Medicine Department of Biomedical Sciences Garibaldi Hospital University of Catania, Catania, Italy
2 Unit of Endocrine Surgery S. Luigi Currò Hospital, University of Catania, Catania, Italy


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Aim. The aim of this study was to analyse possible differences in sperm characteristics (including seminal leukocyte concentration, number of spermiophagies, and sperm reactive oxygen species [ROS] production) between patients with monolateral and bilateral prostate-vesciculo-epididymitis (PVE).
Methods. Seventy-eight selected consecutively enrolled patients (mean age 34 years, range 24-40) with chronic inflammatory postmicrobial PVE and 30 infertile (aged-matched) patients (control group) with inflammatory postmicrobial prostatitis underwent sperm analysis, including seminal leukocyte concentration, number of spermiophages, and ROS production.
Results. Sperm concentration and total sperm number were significantly lower in the patients with bilateral PVE than in those with monolateral PVE. The percentage of cases with oligozoospermia or hyperspermia was significantly higher among patients with bilateral PVE with than those with monolateral PVE. Although the remaining cytologic and physicochemical sperm characteristics and ROS production (both in 45% and 90% Percoll fractions) were not significantly different between the 2 PVE groups, both groups showed median and relative percentages of frequency of abnormal sperm characteristics worse than those in the control group.
Conclusions. Although sperm abnormalities (including seminal leukocyte concentration, number of spermiophages, and ROS production) can distinguish patients with PVE from those with prostatitis alone, the abnormalities did not discriminate between unilateral and bilateral PVE. In diagnostic suspicion of PVE, didymo-epididymal and prostato-vescicular ultrasonography can help discriminate monolateral from bilateral forms of PVE, and is a useful aid in the follow-up of these patients.

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