E-cigarettes ‘can harm male fertility’

E-cigarettes ‘could harm male fertility’: Vaping is listed along with smoking, steroids and drinking as factors affecting reproductive health in the UK health warning first

  • Vaping could harm male fertility, warns a UK public health campaign
  • E-cigarettes are listed along with smoking, steroid use and drinking too much as factors affecting men’s testicular health and fertility
  • The British Fertility Society also warned men against using a laptop on their lap










Vaping could harm male fertility, a British public health campaign has warned for the first time.

E-cigarettes are listed along with smoking, steroid use and too much drinking as factors affecting men’s testicular health and fertility.

The British Fertility Society has also warned men against using a laptop directly on their lap and having very long hot baths as the testicles need to stay cool for optimal sperm production.

A huge drop in sperm count in recent decades is thought to be caused in part by lifestyle changes.

Vaping could harm male fertility, British public health campaign has warned for the first time (file photo)

Vaping could harm male fertility, British public health campaign has warned for the first time (file photo)

In 2020, a Danish study found that men who steamed had lower sperm counts, while a previous study from University College London found that chemicals in e-cig flavorings could make sperm slower to swim.

Kevin McEleny, a male fertility specialist from the University of Newcastle who helped develop the BFS campaign, said: ‘We know that e-cigarette aromas can be toxic to sperm. There are real concerns about the effect of these devices on male fertility because they do not undergo the same rigorous controls that drugs do. I definitely tell men undergoing IVF that they should not smoke if possible, although cigarette smoking is likely to be worse. ‘

Dr. Raj Mathur, of the British Fertility Society, said: “Although we do not yet have large-scale data on its effects on human fertility, it makes sense to avoid vaping from that point of view.”

The devices have previously been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, lung disease and erectile dysfunction.

E-cigarettes are listed along with smoking, steroid use and overdrinking as factors affecting men's testicular health and fertility (file photo)

E-cigarettes are listed along with smoking, steroid use and overdrinking as factors affecting men’s testicular health and fertility (file photo)

The new evidence is worrying, as poorer sperm production is associated with a higher risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

It comes as England appears to be the first country in the world to supply prescription e-cigarettes to help smokers quit.

John Dunne of the UK Vaping Industry Association argued that the BFS campaign could have “serious and dangerous consequences for public health” because vaping helped smokers quit.

He said there was a ‘wide range’ of things, such as alcohol, that affect ‘the delicate balance of male fertility’.

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