Aren’t you believing this?? But its going to be true.
Scientists have developed a smartphone app for measuring sperm count which, they say, can be used at home with no special training required.
Hadi Shafiee, leader of the research team at Harvard Medical School, said: “We wanted to come up with a solution to make male infertility testing as simple and affordable as home pregnancy tests.”
Although men and women experience infertility in equal measure, the issue often goes undiagnosed in men due to stigma, cost, and the lack of available lab testing. “It’s mostly women that carry the weight of infertility,” he said.
World Health Organization, which dubs semen abnormal if it has less than 15 million sperm per milliliter or if less than 40 percent of the sperm are swimming.
How does it work??
The sperm-testing kit consists of a small plastic device with an LED light and lenses that can be attached to a smartphone to help magnify the phone’s camera. After collecting his semen, the user would use an eye dropper-like vial to draw up a tiny amount of the sample onto a disposable microchip, much like a microscope slide. The chip is then inserted into the device, and positioned under the phone’s camera lens. An app records a short video of the semen sample and analyzes how many sperm are visible and how fast they’re moving, providing a baseline reading of sperm health.
Is it accurate?
With a simple smartphone device and a chip that slurps up sperm, men can easily and cheaply measure the count and motility of their swimmers. The test is about 98 percent accurate, takes less than five seconds, and requires no training to run.
It’s also cheap—the device and the microfluidic chip cost just $4.45 total to manufacture.
One big limitation to the fertility test is that it can’t detect deformed sperm, which can be critical to fertility. It also may miscount sperm if there’s cellular debris roughly the same size as sperm in the semen. The researchers say that better processing algorithms and upgraded optical hardware could overcome these shortfalls later.
But for now, the researchers are happy with the progress they’ve made with the device. “Its ability to accurately identify abnormal semen samples based on sperm concentration and motility can potentially shift the paradigm in male infertility management in both developed and developing countries,” the authors conclude.
N.B. The device is presently not available for sale as the authors of the device are waiting for an approval from the FDA to commercialise it.
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