Dr. Bastuba, a male infertility specialist, explains how riding a bicycle and smoking cigarettes can alter a man's sperm count.
While cycling has been known to impact erectile function, cigarettes have toxins that likely have some impact on overall sperm health.
In terms of cycling and its effects on males, in general, cycling has many positive effects that would outweigh the negative effects in their overall health. Cycling has been shown, especially with improper seat design, to have significant potential impact on erectile function and therefore, if a male is not getting good erections, first off that couple might be less sexually active and it might impact him being able to impregnate his wife in that sense.
The trouble I have seen with cycling and actual fertility and sperm health would be more due to the high heat of cycling. I had a patient not that long ago who would do a century, which is 100 miles of cycling, and he happened to live in the desert. This was an extraordinary individual who would be cycling for extended lengths of time in nearly 100-degree weather. We stopped him from his cycling and his sperm counts came up very nicely, but by and by, cycling in the patients I see doesn’t seem to have a direct impact on seminal parameters other than that type of an extraordinary circumstance.
There is definitely data that suggests that high cigarette intake can have an impact on seminal parameters. I look at it as a wonderful opportunity for a male to have a good reason to try to stop smoking, an immediate reason rather than some unknown cancer that may occur 20 years or 40 years down the line. So I take that opportunity to have the male think about it as something they can do right now that will certainly be impressive to their partner showing that they mean business and so from that standpoint, I think it’s a great opportunity.
The hard science on it is somewhat iffy, but it’s one of those things that we know is a toxin and must have an impact at some levels on overall sperm health and there are various studies that support that.
About Dr. Martin D. Bastuba:
As San Diego's leading subspecialist in male fertility and male and female sexual dysfunction issues, Dr. Martin Bastuba gives hope to couples who have been unable to conceive, and to men and women who are experiencing the anxieties and frustration of sexual dysfunction. He offers complete diagnosis, treatment, prevention techniques and education for his patients.