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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2018 June;70(3):286-99

DOI: 10.23736/S0393-2249.18.03063-1


lingua: Inglese

Male infertility as a proxy of the overall male health status

Paolo CAPOGROSSO 1, 2 , Eugenio VENTIMIGLIA 1, 2, Luca BOERI 1, 2, Walter CAZZANIGA 1, 2, Francesco CHIERIGO 1, 2, Francesco MONTORSI 1, 2, Andrea SALONIA 1, 2

1 Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Milan, Italy; 2 Unit of Urology, Division of Experimental Oncology, San Raffaele Hospital and Institute for Tumor Research and Care, Milan, Italy


INTRODUCTION: Male infertility (MI) has been widely associated with different comorbid conditions. The aim of this review is to summarize the available evidences investigating the link between MI cancer, chronic non-malignant conditions and overall health.
EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: A literature search has been conducted using the MEDLINE/PubMed and Scopus databases for English-language original and review articles and selecting publications from January 2007 to June 2017, although highly regarded older publications were also considered. The following key words and MeSH terms were combined: “male infertility,” “semen analysis,” “health,” “comorbidities,” “cancer,” “metabolic syndrome,” “diabetes,” “hypertension,” “cardiovascular diseases,” and “mortality.”
EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Several studies supported a higher risk of testis cancer for patients with MI; conversely, controversial findings have been reported on the association between prostate cancer and MI. Beside urogenital malignancies, melanoma, bladder, thyroid and hematological malignancies have been also more frequently reported among infertile men. Large cohort studies supported a significant association between diabetes mellitus, metabolic disorders and MI. Similarly, the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases appears to be higher among infertile men. Of note, a significant association between semen alterations and the overall burden of comorbidities, as well as the overall mortality, has been reported. A common genetic background appears as the main pathophysiological link between infertility and other comorbidities.
CONCLUSIONS: Male infertility is a proxy of the overall male health status. Physicians should comprehensively assess men presenting for couple infertility and properly followed-up these patients given their higher risk of developing cancer.

KEY WORDS: Male infertility - Health status - Comorbidity - Neoplasms

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