Herbal products with an antioxidant capacity can boost male reproductive functions. The empiric use of Ceratonia siliqua (carob) for its antioxidant properties is common among infertile men in Iran and Turkey. The objective of this study is to investigate the effects of C. siliqua (carob) on semen parameters, oxidative stress markers, and pregnancy rate in a parallel randomized, controlled study. A total of 60 infertile men with oligozoospermia, asthenospermia, and teratospermia were recruited from April 2018 to March 2019. Participants were divided randomly into the following two groups: carob syrup twice a day or vitamin E 100 mg twice a day for 3 months. Semen analysis was performed and hormonal levels and stress oxidative markers were measured in each treatment arm after 3 months. The quality of semen parameters improved in the carob group compared with Vit E semen count (p = 0.04 Cohen's d = .51), morphology (p = 0.001 Cohen's d = .93) and motility parameters (p = 0.002 Cohen's d = .90) were significantly higher in the carob group. No significant difference can be detected in post-treatment hormonal parameters and oxidative markers between groups, except for total antioxidant capacity(TAC) which was higher after post-treatment in carob group. A significantly higher pregnancy rate was found among the carob group. The administration of carob may be an effective agent for the improvement of semen parameters, probably related both to its involvement in the changing of testosterone level and to its antioxidant properties. Nevertheless, additional studies to evaluate the optimal dose and duration of treatment are needed. The trial has been registered in the Iranian Registry of Clinical Trials (Registration number: IRCT20171209037794N1.
Reproductive sciences (Thousand Oaks, Calif.). 2020 Sep 21 [Epub ahead of print]
Mir Mohammad Reza Aghajani, Soleiman Mahjoub, Faraz Mojab, Mahshid Namdari, Neda Mahdinezhad Gorji, Afsaneh Dashtaki, Parvaneh Mirabi
Infertility and Reproductive Health Research Center. Health Research Institute, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol, Iran., Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center and School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran., Community Oral Health Department, School of Dentistry, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran., Department of Clinical Biochemistry, School of Medicine, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol, Iran., Infertility and Reproductive Health Research Center. Health Research Institute, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol, Iran. .