Sperm DNA damage and semen quality impairment after treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors detected using semen analysis and sperm chromatin structure assay

J Urol. 2008 Nov;180(5):2124-8. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2008.07.034. Epub 2008 Sep 18.

Abstract

Purpose: Semen parameters and sperm DNA were evaluated in patients receiving selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.

Materials and methods: Semen samples were obtained from 74 fertile, depressed men treated with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (group 1) and 44 healthy fertile volunteers who served as a control (group 2). Two semen analyses and physical examinations were completed in all participants. Sperm chromatin structure assay was used to detect sperm DNA fragmentation.

Results: The mean +/- SE total sperm count in patients receiving selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and in normal subjects was 61.2 +/- 11.4 million and 186.2 +/- 31.4 million, respectively (p = 0.001). Patients in group 1 had a mean motility of 48.2% +/- 4.6%, which was significantly lower than the mean of 66.2% +/- 4.4% in normal controls (p = 0.01). Normal sperm morphology was detected in 14 patients (18.9%) and 23 controls (52.3%) (p = 0.001). Patients treated with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors had a mean of 8.1% +/- 5.4% normal forms per ejaculate. A significant increase in the amount of denatured single strand DNA in total cellular DNA was found in patients treated with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors compared with that in controls (43.2% +/- 11.4% vs 21.4% +/- 10.6%, p = 0.01). Each semen analysis parameter significantly correlated with treatment duration.

Conclusions: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can impair semen quality and damage sperm DNA integrity. Further studies are needed to replicate our findings.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Case-Control Studies
  • DNA Damage*
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oligospermia / chemically induced*
  • Oligospermia / genetics
  • Probability
  • Reference Values
  • Risk Assessment
  • Semen / cytology
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Sperm Count / statistics & numerical data*
  • Sperm Motility / drug effects
  • Statistics, Nonparametric

Substances

  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors