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, 19 (1), 89-94

Combination Therapy With Antioxidants Improves Total Motile Sperm Counts: A Preliminary Study


Combination Therapy With Antioxidants Improves Total Motile Sperm Counts: A Preliminary Study

Kazutaka Terai et al. Reprod Med Biol.


Purpose: Optimal strategies to treat idiopathic male infertility have remained unclear. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of combination antioxidant therapy with several vitamins and supplements on semen parameters.

Methods: Thirty-one men with oligozoospermia and/or asthenozoospermia evaluated by a Makler counting chamber were randomly assigned to two treatment groups: a combination of antioxidant supplements (L-carnitine, zinc, astaxanthin, coenzyme Q10, vitamin C, vitamin B12, and vitamin E) and a Chinese herbal medicine, hochu-ekki-to (HE). Serum endocrinological profiles and semen parameters, especially total motile sperm count, were compared between before and after 12 weeks of treatment in both groups.

Results: In the supplement group, endocrinological findings were not significantly improved. The semen parameters of semen volume, sperm concentration, and sperm motility were not statistically significantly improved, whereas total motile sperm count was significantly improved. In contrast, none of the endocrinological factors or semen findings were significantly improved by the Chinese herbal medicine although semen concentration, semen motility, and total motile sperm count showed a tendency to increase.

Conclusion: Because combination antioxidant therapy could improve sperm motility significantly for patients with idiopathic oligoasthenozoospermia, our supplement could be one treatment option for idiopathic male infertility.

Keywords: antioxidant; hochu‐ekki‐to; male infertility; oligoasthenozoospermia; total motile sperm count.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare no conflicts of interest in association with this manuscript.


Figure 1
Figure 1
Changes in the total motile sperm count. A, Supplement group, B, HE (hochu‐ekki‐to) group. NS, not significant

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