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How do IVF Clinics convert fertile men into IVF patients by fudging the semen analysis Report?
August 22, 2023

It is a common assumption that IVF clinics provide reliable semen analysis reports, but the reality is quite different. Many clinics deliberately misreport these analyses to increase their workload and revenue. This dishonest practice is particularly prevalent in sperm morphology testing.

Sperm samples contain both normally and abnormally shaped sperms; however, having some abnormal sperms does not necessarily indicate infertility. Unfortunately, many labs falsely report a high percentage of abnormal forms in all men who come for testing – even those with secondary infertility who have fathered children before. This diagnosis is called teratozoospermia, and these men and advised to do IVF/ICSI to have a baby!

The issue lies not in an epidemic of poor sperm quality but rather in an epidemic of inaccurate reporting by laboratories taking shortcuts due to a lack of time or expertise for proper testing procedures. Patients often lack the background knowledge necessary to ask intelligent questions about their results, and doctors are complicit as they benefit from increased workloads when prescribing unnecessary treatments based on false findings.

To protect themselves from such practices, patients should seek out reputable laboratories that follow World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines for semen analysis and provide images documenting the staining process used during the assessment. Surprisingly, ordinary labs may be more trustworthy than specialized IVF facilities as they have no financial incentive to manipulate test results.

In conclusion, it is crucial for patients undergoing fertility treatment to educate themselves about potential pitfalls within the industry and actively advocate for transparency throughout their medical journey.

Authored by : Dr Aniruddha Malpani, MD and reviewed by Dr Anjali Malpani.