Morphological sperm alternations in different types of prostatitis
The possible negative effect of the chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS) on semen parameters and especially sperm morphology is still a controversial matter. The aim of this study was therefore to investigate if different types of prostatitis can have a negative effect on sperm morphology and to compare our results with that of a literature survey. Semen analyses were performed on 34 males with confirmed CPPS (NIH III A), 18 males with CPPS (NIH III B) and 17 males as controls. When sperm morphology was evaluated according to WHO criteria, no differences were found between the mean percentages of morphologically normal spermatozoa for the three groups. An extended sperm morphology evaluation according to strict criteria showed that the NIH III A group had a tendency for a lower percentage of morphologically normal spermatozoa (5.3 ± 3.1%) and acrosome index (8.7 ± 4.8%) compared with the control group with values of 7.3 ± 5.6% and 12.7 ± 7.3%, respectively. There was a statistically significant higher (P = 0.0186) mean percentage (17.5 ± 15.7%) of elongated spermatozoa in the NIH III A group compared with the control group (7.2 ± 9.5%) while the NIH III B group had values between those of the control and NIH III A group. Our results indicate that CPPS NIH III A can have a significant negative effect on sperm morphology parameters, as evaluated by strict criteria, and to a lesser extent in cases of CPPS NIH III B compared with a control group.