Male Reproductive Tract Involvement and Sperm Parameters in SARS-CoV-2 Patients: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Yudhistira Pradnyan Kloping, Furqan Hidayatullah, Zakaria Aulia Rahman, Eric Chung, Lukman Hakim

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: There is a growing concern regarding the impact of SARS-CoV-2 infection on the male reproductive tract due to ACE2 receptor expression, however, its impact remains unclear. We performed this review to evaluate whether SARS-CoV-2 infection affects the male reproductive system. Materials and Methods: We conducted a search in the Embase, Scopus, and MEDLINE databases, adhering to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guideline. Eligible studies comprised articles reporting viral RNA presence in semen, sperm parameters, and orchitis or orchiepididymitis occurrence in SARS-CoV-2 patients. Observational studies' quality was determined using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale (NOS). Case reports were assessed using the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI)'s checklist. Results: A total of 32 relevant articles were included. Viral RNA was found in 7% of infected patients' semen (95% CI, -0.01 to 0.15) from 3 studies. There were also only 7% of patients with orchitis or orchiepididymitis clinical manifestations (95% CI, 0.05-0.10). The semen volume and concentration were 2.34 mL (95% CI, 1.87-2.81) and 51.73 million/mL (95% CI, 31.60-71.85). The progressive and total motility percentages were 36.11% (95% CI, 28.87-43.35) and 43.07% (95% CI, 28.57-57.57), respectively. The morphology was 6.03% (95% CI, -1.05 to 13.10). There is a difference in semen volume between moderate and severe infections (MD, 0.52; 95% CI, 0.27-0.76; p<0.0001) and concentration between mild and moderate (MD, 18.74; 95% CI, 1.02-36.46; p=0.04), mild and severe (MD, 43.50; 95% CI, 13.86-73.14; p=0.004), as well as moderate and severe (MD, 22.25; 95% CI, 9.33-35.17; p=0.0007). Conclusions: SARS-CoV-2 infection may result in decreased sperm concentration in severe cases and the mechanism relates to potential reproductive tract inflammation. The absence of large viral RNA detection in the semen indicates a systemic effect, although this is largely unproven.

Original languageEnglish
Article number220019
JournalWorld Journal of Men?s Health
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • COVID-19
  • Healthy lifestyle
  • Orchitis
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Sperm


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