Can Male Enhancement Pills Cause Birth Defections?

Male enhancement pills – be it prescription or illegal can pose serious health risks. It is true and several studies have long proved their ill-effects on health too.
Male enhancement pills are now seen as a recreational method to boost one’s sexual performance can lead to serious health hazards that also amount to permanent impotence.

Among various side-effects, the male enhancement pills, especially those prescribed ones are linked to different levels of health risks.

As per reports, healthy and active men who take prescribed Viagra or its other counterfeit drugs to treat their erectile dysfunctions may face a permanent impotence, especially younger individuals.

Using Viagra or many such drugs can damage men’s fertility and trigger an inability to procreate and make a family. This likelihood is higher among young individuals, who are using it as a recreational purpose. As per reports, many anti-impotence drugs designed to cure one’s erectile dysfunctions and help with involuntary erections can lead to decrease in sperm counts. So, it may be a hard blow for men, who take male enhancement pills and prescription drugs like Viagra to boost their libido and improve their poor sexual performance.

At the same time, the dangers of childless future are lurking from the male enhancement pills as the use of these drugs is at all time high. And infertility clinics that have been prescribing Viagra to help increase sperm counts in men seem to be in troubles as it is not going to help couples eyeing to produce babies through IVF treatments. Overall, this method seems to wreck havoc on couples as the male enhancement pills are supposed to prevent them from conceiving.
A research was carried out to see the effects of Viagra on male sperm count and its concentration. The lead researcher of the study, Glenn collected specimen of semen from the volunteers and dipped them in a weak solution of Viagra, and later compared it to the samples of the blood of a volunteer diluted with 100mg of Viagra.
With due course, the treated solution of semen was observed against the standard samples of blood and they found Viagra to unleash two different types of mechanisms on men’s sperm functions.

Although the blue pill intensified the action of sperms, it damaged the level of acrosome, responsible to trigger the fertilization process by breaking a layer outside woman’s egg.

The exposure to Viagra made acrosome activated much earlier than the actual process of breakdown of the egg membrane, hence, the fertilization cannot take place. The research reported that it indicated the ill-effects of the male enhancement drug like Viagra.

However, this study alone cannot validate if this really affects one’s fertility and rips him of his ability to father a child.

The team led by Professor Glenn carried out the same study on mice. It was observed that mice on the solution of Viagra produced 40% fewer embryos than mice on control drugs. Well, there was no enough evidence to prove that mice babies born from male mice on male enhancement pill caused any damage to them.

Since, the use of Viagra is high among the club goers, the effect of this recreational drug could be damaging to their fertility health too.
Couples looking forward to IVF clinics for their problems already have suffered from poor infertility concerns, and prescribing the male partners with Viagra could be more damaging as it can damage male sperm volume and motility.

Other than this, the drug is associated with potential side-effect as it leads to the development of priapism. This is a condition that results in a persistent and painful erection that refuses to die down. The use of other priapism treatments like injection administration could be even dangerous as it increases the blood flow to the penis, and helps keep and maintain an erection for as long as six hours. If the condition of priapism stays for these long hours, it can restrict the blood flow to the delicate blood arteries of the penis, and cause serious damage to the penis.

What is more alarming is that this male enhancement pill is making its presence felt in the traditional club culture, which becomes to be known as ‘Sextasy’ as being combined with a recreational drug Ecstasy. Hence, while using the combination of Ecstasy and any male enhancer, it fosters the development of priapism in younger men, who use this drug as a recreational purpose.

In another report that included the side-effects of male enhancement pills, reported that men holidaying in Amsterdam were forced to get back home after they achieved permanent erections due to use of Viagra on their tour.

However, there is a lack of evidence that can prove the association of Viagra with priapism.

While getting to know about the side-effects of Viagra and other erectile dysfunction pills, we should never forget that a wide range of male enhancement pills contain the traces of sildenafil, verdanfil and tadalafil like substances, linked to bring a steep drop to the blood pressure  and cause even deaths and injury. Besides this, a report suggests that Viagra is linked to causing infertility and impacting the sperm production. Hence, it is likely to affect one’ ability to procreate in the later future.

So, while male enhancement pills like Viagra can cause problems with fertility, and other serious health concerns, can it be linked to birth defects?
Birth Defects And Male Enhancement Pills
The answer is no. We do not have much studies and evidence that can prove the ill effects of male enhancement pills like Viagra and others to impact the pregnancy and cause birth defects.

However, it is likely to have indirect effects to cause congenital defects in unborn babies as it is directly linked to sperm damage, which is a key parameter to cause birth defects, as though it is subject to debate and differences of opinion.

We will explore much on it with an extensive analysis of various studies.

Earlier, we have focused on how men’s fertility gets affected by the consumption of male enhancement pills, which wrecks havoc on the sperm production and its concentration.

A new study also suggested that men with low sperm counts can contribute to birth defects in their future children. This is likely to be higher for couples, who are trying to become parents with the help of IVF technology.

A process related To Birth Defects During Fertilization
A mechanism known as a parental imprinting helps aid the transit of certain genetic traits to a child from either parent during the fertilization. In order to foster a smooth activation of this process, a process called methylation has to work properly to switch on and off certain types of genes.

A Portuguese research studying men with low sperm count found an abnormality of methylation in their sperms. Although the methylation errors are not similar as genetic mutations, the errors in sperms do pertain to faulty gene regulation.  However, the cause is not clear, but the errors in gene regulation do contribute to birth defects, which is highly devastating for couples.

That being said, the IVF technologies across the globe is highly dependent on male enhancement pills like Viagra or other artificial means to increase the sperm counts in men, which is quite perilous to help aid pregnancy.

The reports of the study have been published in The Lancet. The researchers had expressed their concern towards the use of male enhancement pills as it could contribute to birth defects for the couples relying on in vitro fertilization to become parents of their own child. At the same time, any IVF clinics that aim to correct men’s poor sperm production, and if they overcome their challenges of low sperm count, it still poses higher risks and passes on to that faulty gene from defective sperms to an offspring, and trigger birth defects.

To add more woes to your family planning through assisted reproductive mediums like IVF, it raises the risks of specific abnormalities in your offspring. Researchers are of the opinion that the two most common congenital birth defects that occur due to IVF surgical processes are Beckwith-Wiedmann’s syndrome (a growth abnormality) and Angelman’s syndrome (a mental and mobility disorder).
Surprisingly, due to spontaneous mutation, a faulty gene could easily pass from either parent to the offspring, and cause congenital birth defects. Different findings have proved that the spontaneous form arises from the father’s mutative sperms. For say, a genetic disorder like Prader Willi syndrome occurs due to genetic errors in father’s sperms. As though, there is no link between a low sperm count due to application of male enhancement pills, this type of disorder is likely to arise from fathers working in an environment surrounded by solvents and hydrocarbons.

However, there are different opinions regarding the matter.  The Baylor College of Medicine claimed something else and further said that there is no such link between low sperm counts and birth defects.
Study Disapproving Birth Defects Due To Low Sperm Count
A new study published in their database confirms that it does not validate the claims that babies born from a father with low sperm count would sustain congenital birth defects.

In case of infertile couples, the failure of ability of getting pregnant increases by 40% due to men’s contribution. While assisted reproductive methods like IVF is a way to help couples have their own children, researchers fear that this could lead to more complications in the form of birth defects when a male partner is supposed to get treatments for his low sperm using male enhancement pills.

However, this finding has turned to be untrue for some researchers at Baylor College of Medicine, and they found no possible links between these two.

While validating this statement, Dr. Tobias Kohler at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, said in a press release that couples should not worry about decreased semen quality and birth defects.

The whole finding of the study that claimed no direct link between semen quality, sperm counts and birth defects had been presented at the American Urological Association annual meeting.

Surprisingly, whereas male enhancement pills or drugs, including Viagra, sildenafil and cialis are a prescription drug, and are suggested to treat erectile dysfunctions, the applications of these drugs are used to address some complications in newborn babies too.  

Use Of Sildenafil During IVF Treatment
Sildenafil- a key drug to treat erectile dysfunctions in men is seen being used for certain situations during pregnancy through IVF technologies as well as normal pregnancy for long.

Certain conditiosn like pre-eclampsia in pregnant mothers that restricts the growth of the fetus in the womb is likely to be addressed with sildenafil. Besides this, the drug is effective in reducing the distress of the baby during labor.

In this kind of situation when growth is halted and baby’s distress is on the rise, the baby does not receive adequate nutrients and oxygen via the placenta. In such condition, sildenafil is aimed at boosting the blood supply to the uterus and placenta by widening the blood vessel of the mother’s pelvis. This is how sildenafil works to help a fetus with distress and restricted growth.

Recent studies carried out to reduce the risks of pregnant mothers seem go awry and resulted in neonatal deaths. Well, this is subject to investigations why such incident took place as there are no previous reports of sildenafil that caused any risk of severe side-effects, fetus deaths including congenital birth defects.

Similar studies aiming at reducing fetal distress during labor have been carried out in different parts of the world with sildenafil, but no traces of such negative outcomes proved.

Hence, in many cases, sildenafil and Viagra like drugs work wonders to reduce chances of abnormality in the fetus.

Whether male enhancement pills and supplement cause any birth defects or not, is not clear. And it depends on various factors how these pills work to offer effective results based on the physical conditions of the patients.

Since various studies brought different opinions about the link between low sperm and birth defects, as of now it is controversial to comment on some vague revelation if low sperm count due to excessive use of male enhancement pills cause birth defects or not. It is true that male enhancement pills and other supplements are associated with a wide range of complications, but if it causes birth defects or not it is not certain. Hence, we need to be reliant on more specific and adequate data to prove the ill-effects of male enhancement pills on offspring in the womb.