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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wi-Fi Connected Laptop Use and Quality of Sperm leading to Decreased Fertility

Posted by Prahallad Panda on 7:43 PM Comments

Electromagnetic waves from Wi-Fi connection and heat generated from laptop when kept on the lap during use may affect the sperm quality. Testes develop from abdomen and descend down to the scrotum towards the end stage of pregnancy and permanently housed there.
The temperature inside abdomen of human is at least 1.5o Celsius higher than the temperature inside scrotum. Scrotum effectively acts as an air-conditioner for the testes; during summer the muscles inside scrotum relax, so scrotal skin relax in an attempt to reduce heat inside and in winter muscles contract to make the scrotum more compact to preserve heat. This is the nature’s arrangement for better function of testes.
Transverse section through the left side of th...
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Heat adversely affects the function of testes and that is why, there can be low sperm count in varicocele, a condition where the blood vessels around testes and spermatic cord become engorged. So also remaining more time in hot bath tub may adversely affect the sperm quality. Using tight undergarments for longer time may also have similar effect.
The normal semen has;
1.      Quantity- 2-5 ml/ ejaculate,
2.      Number- 60-150 millions/ml,
3.      Morphology- No structural defect at least in 80-90%,
4.      Motility- More than 95%  motile,  
5.      Fructose content- 150mg%
6.      Liquefaction Time- 5 minutes.
Recently, a published news in the Reuters cites a research where it has been found that heat and electromagnetic wave from Wi-Fi connected laptop kept on lap while working can damage the sperm. They tested the sperm kept below the laptop which was in use.
They found out that a quarter of the sperm lost their motility in comparison to the semen samples stored at the same temperature away from the computer, where loss of motility was only 14 percent. Nine percent of the sperm showed DNA damage, three-fold more than the comparison samples. 
An article published in the Sciencedirect where the researchers tried to evaluate the direct impact of laptop use on human spermatozoa. They summarize that keeping a laptop connected wirelessly to the Internet on the lap near the testes may result in decreased male fertility.
The researchers hooked thermometers to the scrotums of 29 young men who were balancing a laptop on their knees. They found that even with a lap pad under the computer, the men's scrotums overheated quickly.
"Within 10 or 15 minutes their scrotal temperature reached above what we consider safe, but they don't feel it".
An earlier research has shown that warming the scrotum more than one degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) is enough to damage sperm.
Some time back, it was also in news that one man landed in burning his penis and scrotum after prolonged use keeping it on the lap.
It was reported in the Independent some years beck that radiation from mobile phones interferes with bees' navigation systems, preventing the famously home-loving species from finding their way back to their hives.
Now a limited study at Landau University has found that bees refuse to return to their hives when mobile phones are placed nearby.
Dr George Carlo, who headed a massive study by the US government and mobile phone industry of hazards from mobiles in the Nineties, said: "I am convinced the possibility is real."
The implications of the spread are alarming. Most of the world's crops depend on pollination by bees. Albert Einstein once said that if the bees disappeared, "man would have only four years of life left".
Though the real threat of electromagnetic wave on sperm quality and infertility may need further evaluation, it is always better to remain in the safe side.
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