Pyospermia, also called ‘Leukocytospermia’ is a condition where an unusually high number of white blood cells are present in the semen. (More than a million per millilitre WBC in semen). By nature, white blood cells release a substance called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) that destroys the harmful germs that they are fighting. When WBCs are present in the semen, the ROS released harms the outer membrane of the sperms and can affect sperm motility and can also damage the DNA of the sperms.

Causes of pyospermia

  1. Infection – Where there is an infection, there are white blood cells in the body. If any of the reproductive organs are infected, you can expect to find white blood cells. Genital infections such as herpes, gonorrhoea, chlamydia or other sexually transmitted infections can increase the WBC count in semen.
  2. Inflammation of genital tract or narrowing of the urethra (the pipe that carries semen out of the body) can also increase the WBC count in the semen.
  3. General infection in the body.
  4. Varicocele – swelling of veins in the scrotum
  5. Infrequent ejaculation can also lead to accumulation of WBC
  6. Consumption of drugs such as marijuana, alcohol or tobacco and related products

Treatment of pyospermia

The first thing a doctor would look for is an infection – in the urine or semen. A semen analysis may be needed. If your doctor suspects STI, a blood test may also be required. If he/she finds out any infection, appropriate antibiotics may be prescribed.

If any inflammation is found to be the cause, anti-inflammatory corticosteroids may be prescribed. Your doctor will also query you about your lifestyle, food habits and your smoking and drinking habits. You may be advised to avoid consumption of tobacco products (in any form or shape), reduce the number of (alcohol) drinks and to say no to drugs. 

If you are in a no-fap mode with higher WBC count, you may be advised to masturbate or have sex to reduce the number of white blood cells.  A varicocele may be treated with surgery, varicocelectomy where the veins are removed or blocked using appropriate procedures.

Pyospermia contributes to 5% of infertile cases in men. If you are diagnosed with an infection, you must immediately get your partner tested. You may have given the infection to her or got one from her. So, treating both is the proper solution to avoid recurring infections.