Correlation between lead and cadmium concentration and semen quality.

PMID 25228328


There are contrary reports of association of lead and cadmium with the decline in semen quality. This study evaluates whether seminal lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) at environmental concentration are associated with altered semen quality. We conducted a study of healthy fertile and infertile men 20-43 years of age attending the Andrology Laboratory of Reproductive Biology Department for semen analysis. The semen analysis was carried out according to the WHO 2010 guidelines. Seminal lead and cadmium were estimated by ICP-AES. The lead and cadmium values were significantly higher in infertile subjects. A negative association between seminal lead or cadmium concentration and sperm concentration, sperm motility and per cent abnormal spermatozoa was found. This study shows that exposure to Pb (5.29-7.25 μg dl(-1) ) and cadmium (4.07-5.92 μg dl(-1) ) might affect semen profile in men. Age, diet, smoking and tobacco chewing habits may have an influence on the increase in exposure to Pb and Cd in the individual subjects.