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    Embarrassment at clinic
    Anon_44524 posted:
    I'm not sure how to say this without sounding stupid. I already feel stupid. I've had to go to a clinic to undertake some tests (one of which was an SA (Semen Analysis) test. I don't know if anyone here is familiar with this.

    Well, after being given a small plastic cup, and told to go into a very sterile looking room, I was to put the lid on the cup and give it to the nurse, who was waiting somewhere outside.

    My problem was that the cup filled, and then of course there was nowhere for the rest of it to go except on the floor. Because of this, I was told I'd have to come back and do the test again, because apparently they need the whole sample! The nurse said they should have some bigger containers. Nightmare! It was bad enough doing it once. I felt totally stupid that I couldn't even do a simple thing, but now I'm worried the same thing might happen again.

    Is it true, does anyone know, that they need the 'whole sample'? I really don't want to embarrass myself again, but I'm not sure I have an option if I want to get my test results...
    dalmat responded:
    PS - this happened many months ago, and I haven't had the courage to go back yet!
    georgiagail replied to dalmat's response:
    Was the point of the Semen Analysis test to check for the number of sperm present?

    hairyd replied to georgiagail's response:
    Why be embrassed. You doctor requested the test. Its a normal medical process. I am should this is not the only times you jerk off. So relax fill the cup. If you need another cup. Open the door and make the request. The personnel know whats going down.
    Always remember your penis is unique, just like every man.
    thistledown1973 responded:
    I am a medical laboratory scientist, and yes we do need the whole specimen. A semen analysis consists of:

    Volume of semen

    pH: (the pH of semen is usually around 8 because the vaginal secretions are around a pH of 5-6 to inhibit bacterial growth, so the higher pH of semen buffers the the sperm against destruction by the acidic environment).

    Liquefaction: Semen starts out as a thick fluid, gets thicker like a clot, and then thins back out between 30 and 60 minutes later. Too thick means the sperm cannot travel to meet the egg, so we check whether the semen thins out in the right time frame.

    Motility: What percentage of sperm are in motion versus still

    Direction: Do the sperm move forward or do they flail in place or go in circles. If they cannot move forward they will not be able to get to the egg easily.

    Count: We make a dilution of the semen using a solution that kills them (so they will hold still) and makes the count reasonable (there's usually many millions of these little guys). We then count them in a hemacytometer (measured grid on a glass slide) and calculate the count.

    Healthy sperm that move well but are in small quantity can be concentrated using a "sperm wash" and implanted using artificial insemination. This way a man who make a small amount of sperm can still be a dad.

    Volume of semen in no way tells us how many sperm, but if you miss some of the collection, the part you missed may be more or less full of sperm and skew your results.
    thistledown1973 replied to thistledown1973's response:
    Also, the pathologist (doctor that works with the lab) performs a sperm morphology which identifies unusual sperm shapes and characteristics such a two heads, two tails, etc.
    Anon_44524 replied to thistledown1973's response:
    Thank you very much for your answer! I understand now what you say. I wasn't aware that the sperm was in different concentrations in different parts of the sample.
    fenton04 replied to thistledown1973's response:
    I work in a lab too. Semen analysis is a time sensitive test also.
    jss123 responded:
    I can understand your embarrassment. I had to make a post-vasectomy sperm sample at a pathology lab twice.
    (The first time showed sperm in my sample).

    I was told they needed the whole sample. So what they told you was correct.

    You probably filled the container because you were probably asked to abstain from ejaculating (for in my case for 3 days).
    The amount of semen I ejaculated was considerably more than usual as result of this.

    I don't think pathology labs have ever thought how embarrassing it is to make such a sample. They sent me to the staff toilets !! To make matters worse someone knocked on the door while I was busy.

    The least they can do is give you a container that provides for all types of men. Mine was far too narrow. I don't think they even thought about how on earth I was going to get the sample into it.
    There was NO WAY I was going to ask for a wider one.
    I literally had to aim to make sure nothing end up on the floor.

    To those working at the labs that responded why don't they give you a sterile condom or something a lot more appropriate to masturbate into ?
    This kind of things wouldn't happen.
    fenton04 replied to jss123's response:
    Just like this being a time sensitive test. It is also a temperature sensitive test. Samples are stored in a warm air bath and a condom is just not practical. Sorry.

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