Infertility Tests: Transrectal and Scrotal Ultrasound

Infertility tests are typically performed on a couple that has tried conceiving for several months/years without any results. The tests will assess whether there is a fertility problem in either of the partners. In men, the transrectal and scrotal ultrasound is a relevant test that can show whether there are any problems with the scrotal area affecting the man’s fertility. If any abnormalities are found, these are typically fixed through surgery.

Transrectal and Scrotal Ultrasound

The transrectal and scrotal ultrasound is an outpatient procedure performed among the other tests to determine if a man has any fertility problems. The ultrasound may be needed to detect if the patient is affected by retrograde ejaculation or has a blockage of the ejaculatory duct (or any problems affecting the ejaculatory duct).

The test is performed with an ultrasound device. The patient won’t require anesthesia and the test will last no more than 15 minutes. If any abnormalities are detected, these will be shown on the screen, so the results are immediate. Additional tests may be run if any abnormalities are detected.

When Transrectal and Scrotal Ultrasound Is Performed

Not all patients need to undergo the transrectal and scrotal ultrasound test. This is typically performed if the other tests show no conclusive results and the fertility doctor suspects there may be some problems in the scrotum area. If the ejaculatory duct is blocked or affected in any way, there will be additional symptoms such as impossibility to ejaculate or painful ejaculation.

The transrectal and scrotal ultrasound test may also be performed prior to a surgery in the area, as the surgeon will need to get the precise location of all organs so that the surgery will be successful.

Other Fertility Tests for Men

If the man is tested to determine is he is fertile or not, there will be several other tests needed:

  • Hormonal test, which will be performed on a blood sample and it will establish if the patient produces sufficient amounts of testosterone
  • A test of a semen sample, which will determine its motility and quality; a semen analysis may also indicate if there are any infections present
  • A general exam of the genitals, as there may be a structural problem that will cause infertility

Infertility Treatments for Men

Depending on the findings of the tests, the treatment may be possible and performed through:

  • Surgery; typically, when the patient is diagnosed with retrograde ejaculation or ejaculatory duct obstruction, surgery is the treatment of choice. The surgery may be a simple procedure or a more complex one, depending on the results of the transrectal and scrotal ultrasound tests.
  • Hormonal supplementation
  • Herbal supplements
  • A change in lifestyle and diet

If there are no treatment options left, there is always the option of getting sperm from a donor or adopting a child.