#VisualAbstract: Effect of Folic Acid and Zinc Supplementation in Men on Semen Quality and Live Birth Among Couples Undergoing Infertility Treatment

1. In couples obtaining infertility treatment, folic acid and zinc supplementation in men did not lead to a significant improvement in semen quality or the rate of live birth, when compared to a placebo

2. A mild increase in sperm DNA fragmentation was found in the supplementation group.

Evidence Rating Level: 1 (Excellent)

Study Rundown: The use of dietary supplements is becoming more and more popular among couples trying to conceive and this interest has been reported by adult men as well. However, research to support this claim that supplementation could affect live birth is lacking.  This study examined the effect of daily folic acid and zinc supplementation in men for couples seeking infertility treatment. In specific, the semen quality and live birth outcomes were measured among couples enrolled into the study.  The results revealed no significant improvement in semen quality or the rate of live birth, when compared to a placebo.  Folic acid and zinc supplementation by male partners in couples seeking infertility treatment is not supported.

This study successfully randomized a large sample size into the treatment groups and effectively analyzed supplementation impact on semen quality and effects on DNA fragmentation index.  Although the results can be generalized to infertility clinic population, the majority of the patients enrolled were white, non-Hispanic, with a high socioeconomic status.

Click to read the study in JAMA

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