Semen quality is a predictor of subsequent morbidity. A Danish cohort study of 4,712 men with long-term follow-up

Semen quality is suggested to be a biological marker of long-term morbidity and mortality; however, few studies have been conducted on this subject. We identified 5,785 men seen for infertility in Frederiksberg Hospital, Denmark from 1977-2010, and 4,712 men were followed in the Danish National Patient Registry until first hospitalization, death or end of the study. We classified patients according to all hospitalizations and the presence of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, testicular and prostate cancer. We found a clear association between sperm concentration below 15 mill/mL and all-cause hospitalizations, 50% (95% CI: 1.4, 1.6) and cardiovascular disease, 40% (95% CI: 1.2, 1.6) compared to men with a concentration above 40 mill/mL. The probabilities for hospitalizations were also higher with a low total sperm count and motility. Men with a sperm concentration of 195-200 mill/mL were, on average, hospitalized for the first time seven years later compared to men with a sperm concentration of 0-5 mill/mL. Semen quality was associated with long-term morbidity and a significantly higher risk of hospitalization were found, in particular for cardiovascular diseases and diabetes mellitus. Our study supports the suggestion that semen quality is a strong biomarker of general health.

American journal of epidemiology. 2017 May 11 [Epub ahead of print]

Tabassam Latif, Tina Kold Jensen, Jesper Mehlsen, Stine Agergaard Holmboe, Louise Brinth, Kirsten Pors, Sven Olaf Skouby, Niels Jørgensen, Rune Lindahl-Jacobsen