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A SHEFFIELD fertility expert says new research which claims millions of men who take antidepressants could damage their sperm and risk infertility is 'of concern.'
The findings suggest that commonly described drugs for depression can break up DNA in sperm.
Outwardly the sperm may appear normal in numbers, shape and swimming ability. But similar levels of DNA fragmentation in sperm are said to have led to fertility and pregnancy problems.
For couples undergoing In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) treatment, fewer embryos form when the man's sperm has damaged DNA, says the Cornell Medical Center in New York City.
Dr Allan Pacey, senior lecturer in andrology at the University of Sheffield, said: "The apparent increase in sperm DNA damage is alarming, although the level at which we think the damage becomes clinically significant is controversial to many scientists.
"It is a shame that the authors appear not to have conducted a randomised controlled trial which would be the most scientific way to investigate the drugs effects, but the results are of concern and need to be investigated."
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