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No, the COVID-19 vaccine has no impact on the male sperm count or male factor fertility

Another day, another COVID vaccine myth debunked.

Out of all the bizarre things we have heard so far related to the COVID vaccine, most are somehow related to infertility. We are guessing that's because it hits a nerve, with infertility on the rise, and many couples getting a diagnosis of "unexplained infertility" it just makes a great target for the sake of associating anything and everything to it.

The rumors originally emanated from a video released by an American osteopath, Sherri Tenpenny, known to be one of the biggest profiteers of antivaccination misinformation. In the now removed video (thanks to timely fact-checking by Reuters), with over 100,000 views she falsely claims they cause deaths, “transmit” side effects to the unvaccinated, and cause infertility risks. Fortunately, all of these claims are scientifically inaccurate and not backed by any data, multiple experts have stated.

Countering these misplaced claims, a study conducted by the University of Miami Health System, has recently released its results maintaining the safety of the mRNA based COVID vaccine.

The research revealed that men might go through a temporary lowering of sperm count for a few weeks following the vaccine but no more than they would following a viral infection.

In fact, study co-author Ranjith Ramasamy, MD, of the University of Miami Health System, went on to explain that the actual threat to male reproductive health is COVID-19 itself. The virus has been linked to lower sperm count/quality and higher rates of erectile dysfunction.

The study that tracked 45 men (ages 18-50, median age 28), vaccinated with the Moderna (53%) and Pfizer (47%) shots, found there was no significant decline in the men's sperm counts at about 70 days after the final vaccine shot.

Although the cluster size of 45 in the study was admittedly small, Dr. Ramasamy argued, they were still confident that the promising results could be applied to the rest of the population, as well.

These encouraging results come amidst widespread concerns regarding the adverse effects of the mRNA based COVID vaccines, with multitudes of men even delaying getting vaccinated solely because of these fears, mostly triggered by myths circulating on social media.


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