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The IVF Fertility Blog

The Difference Between Impotency and Male Infertility

Two key issues in men’s sexual and reproductive health are impotency and male fertility. Although the terms are occasionally used interchangeably, impotence and male infertility are distinct medical conditions. For both conditions, quality male fertility care is available. About one third of the time, a couples inability to get pregnant can be attributed to the male partner. 

male infertilityImpotency vs. inFertility in Males

Male fertility issues may be the result of:

  • Low sperm count, low quality, low motility of sperm
  • Not producing any sperm
  • Physical inability to ejaculate semen from the body


Impotency is a man's inability to achieve and maintain a penile erection to perform sexual intercourse. This condition is also referred to as erectile dysfunction (ED). For a man to achieve and maintain an erection, several systems in the body must work together, including the nervous system and cardiovascular system. Should any of these systems be compromised, achieving and maintaining an erection becomes difficult. Impotency is often the result of the following health issues:

  • Heart disease or other vascular issues
  • Emotional or mental health issues such as depression
  • Stress
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Medications
  • Obesity
  • Abuse of drugs or alcohol
  • Nerve damage

While the condition does make it difficult for a man to have sex, it does not mean that a man is unable to produce sperm to conceive a child. A man can produce healthy sperm even if he is impotent.

Male Fertility

A man’s fertility describes his ability to produce quality sperm in quantities able to fertilize an egg. If a couple has tried to get pregnant for more than one year, they are deemed to be infertile and should seek medical treatment. In one of three cases, both the male and female partners are impacted by fertility issues. A number of things cause infertility in men, including:

  • Treatment for cancer
  • Chronic diseases such as diabetes
  • Alcohol or drug abuse
  • Untreated sexually transmitted diseases
  • Abnormalities in the male reproductive organs
  • Genetic issues
  • Injury to the male reproductive organs
  • Illness experienced as a child with a high temperature

Discover More Resources About Impotency and Male Inferility

RESOLVE's National Infertility Awareness Week - April 24th through April 30th 2016 - is providing helpful resources about the prevalence of male infertility and impotency. Go To #StartAsking.

There are successful treatment methods to correct impotency and male infertility. Discover more resources about how treating impotency and male infertility can help you to start a family. Contact the experts at New Hope Fertility Center today. Please click the icon below and enter your information - or - call 917.525.5496.

Schedule Your Consultation With New Hope Fertility

Topics: Male Infertility

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