COVID-19 may penetrate tissues in the testicles in some men with new coronavirus infection, according to a new study by a group of researchers at the Miami Miller University School of Medicine.
The UM study was published Tuesday in the World Men’s Health Journal.
“These findings could be the first step in exploring COVID’s potential impact,” said lead author Dr Ranjith Ramasamy, associate professor and director of the department of reproductive urology at UM’s Miller. -19 for male fertility and whether the virus can be sexually transmitted. Schools.
How was the research conducted
Ramasamy and eight colleagues analyzed testicular tissue from the autopsy of six men who died from COVID-19 infection in Miami-Dade County. They found impaired sperm function in three of the testicle samples and evidence of COVID-19 by electron microscopy in the tissue of a testicle.
“We have also identified the presence of the virus in a man who had a testicular biopsy to treat infertility but has a history of COVID-19 before.” So the patient tested negative and had no symptoms after taking COVID-19 but still showed the presence of the virus inside the testicles, ”Ramasamy said in a statement.
According to the health journal, the ages of COVID-19 positive autopsy patients ranged from 20 to 87.
The age of COVID-19 negative patients ranged from 28 to 77.
The median interval from the first positive COVID-19 test to death was 11 days, with one being tested after the death of the man.
The age of the patient living with antibody seroconversion following COVID-19 infection was 28.
Why COVID-19 can affect testicular function
“This is the first published study to report the case of a living patient to demonstrate the presence of COVID-19 in the testicular tissue of a cured patient. The discovery is novel, remarkable and definitely worth exploring, ”Ramasamy said.
Researchers know that COVID-19 can affect the lungs, heart, kidneys, and liver. But until UM research, very few people knew about the pathogenesis of the virus in the testicles, World Men’s Health Journal reported.
According to the school, “it is logical that the testes, which are responsible for sperm production and testosterone, are the target for COVID-19 infection. The virus has an affinity for angiotensin-2 converting enzyme receptors, which are found in many organs of the body – including the lungs, heart, intestines, kidneys, and testes. “
But it remains a question of how much virus is present in the testicles to be detectable in semen, as well as at what level of the virus is required in semen to be sexually transmitted. .
Certain other viruses, like mumps, can interfere with sperm production, leading to inflammation of the testicles and causing fertility problems in 10% to 20% of men with mumps – a vaccine is available.
The study’s first author, Justin Achua, the study’s first author, Justin Achua, said COVID-19 could work in a similar way by inducing the inflammatory process.
The UM study on autopsy showed that the testicles infected with COVID-19 showed signs of inflammation due to white blood cells entering the testicles, Achua said.
Patient in the study from Miami-Dade
Ramasamy believes the study has some distinctive buzz in Florida. “Florida is still among the top three states in the US with the number of COVID-19 infections,” he said.
On Friday, the state’s death toll surpassed 17,000 as Florida added 5,245 COVID-19 cases, bringing the state’s known total to 832,625.
Miami-Dade, where the patients used for this study lived and died, had nearly 192,000 confirmed cases and 3,671 deaths as of Friday.
What can you do
“Currently, the study’s findings suggest that men of all ages with COVID-19 and with testicular pain should make an appointment with a urologist,” recommends Ramasamy.
“Testicular pain along with other symptoms could be a sign that COVID-19 has entered the testicles, and if the man is thinking about fertility and / or low testosterone now or in the future. They should evaluate testosterone levels in the blood. He said sperm and test parameters were assessed by semen analysis.