The human body is an incredibly intricate machine! And, the female reproductive system, in particular, is not just a complicated structure, but also an elaborately functioning organism all by itself. And sometimes, your reproductive system not only rejects your partner’s sperm, but even exhibits allergies to it. As incredible as that sounds, such a condition does indeed exist. It is called a sperm allergy. To know more about sperm allergy / semen allergy, read our post below.
The Composition Of Semen:
Before we learn more about semen allergies, it is important to understand the chemical composition of semen. It contains a wide array of chemicals, which include:
- Citric acid
- Free amino acids
- Blood Group Antigens
- Ascorbic Acid
- Uric Acid
- Lactic Acid
- Vitamin B12
What Is A Sperm Allergy?
A sperm allergy or Seminal Plasma Hypersensitivity or semen allergy is a rare disorder that affects a few females. Moreover, if your partner is using a condom, you will not know that you suffer from the condition. The sperm must come in direct contact with your body for the allergy to occur. The rarity of the disorder often leads to misdiagnosis and the symptom similarity to other infections. The disorder is routinely misdiagnosed as:
- UTI or Urinary Tract Infection
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases
- Yeast Infection
Causes Of A Sperm Allergy:
Human Seminal Plasma Hypersensitivity or a sperm allergy typically occurs because the body exhibits allergic responses to certain proteins or chemicals present in your partner’s semen. The allergy to seminal fluid occurs due to a glycoprotein, which is secreted by the prostate gland.
[ Read: Infertility In Women ]
Symptoms Of A Sperm Allergy:
Though the sperm allergy symptoms are localized, they might spread through the body. Also, the symptoms start appearing about ten to twenty minutes after the body comes in contact with the sperm after intercourse. The signs of sperm allergy are not restricted to the vaginal area itself, but can occur in any other body part as well, where semen comes in contact. Some of the symptoms of sperm allergy include:
- Genital Itching
- Tightness In Chest
- Unconsciousness occurs in extreme cases that might prove dangerous. If you seem to feel faint, call the doctor immediately.
- Trouble during breathing
- Painful Urination
- Atopic Eczema
Diagnosing A Sperm Allergy:
If you feel that you have a sperm allergy, or you exhibit any symptoms, you need to consult your gynecologist. Some of the techniques your gynecologist may use to confirm a sperm allergy typically include:
1. Intra-Dermal Testing:
The doctor will use a technique called Intradermal testing to confirm a sperm allergy. Typically, a small amount of your partner’s sperm is injected under your skin to confirm the sperm allergy.
2. Use Of Condoms:
The simplest way to determine whether you are suffering from sperm allergy or not? If the seminal plasma hypersensitivity symptoms do not appear after protected sex, then you are allergic to your partner’s sperm.
3. Isolated Sperm Test:
The test is also called Prick Skin Test. In this test, the health expert will inject some isolated sperms in the female body and some seminal fluid. If the woman suffers from sperm allergy, her body will exhibit strong allergic responses to the latter. However, no such reaction will occur after injecting the isolated sperm.
Does A Sperm Allergy Affect Female Fertility?
Hypersensitivity to semen does not cause infertility in a female. But, if the sensitivity is too high then the doctor will not recommend you to go for natural conception through sexual intercourse. In such cases, medical help is advisable.
What Are The Ill-Effects Of A Sperm Allergy?
Apart from the physical discomfort, a sperm allergy also affects the husband and wife relationship. Females typically abstain from intimacy due to physiological issues. Such a lack of intimacy can have drastic repercussions on the relationship and married life. Thus, both you and your partner should communicate to each other, and also consult an expert or a psychologist to clear such differences.
[ Read: Infertility In Men ]
Treating A Semen Allergy:
If you are suffering from a seminal allergy, then your doctor will suggest some of these treatment methods:
1. Intravaginal Seminal Graded Challenge:
In this method, the doctor will inject small doses of your partner’s semen in your body at regular time intervals. The treatment continues for several hours. This sperm allergy treatment method is similar to the treatment of bee or wasp venom where small doses of venom are given to the patient to help develop immunity to the venom. But, to increase the success rate of this method, the doctor will suggest you have regular sexual intercourse with your partner for a couple of days. Or else the patient is re-exposed to the allergens in the semen.
[ Read: How To Increase Fertility In Men ]
2. Intrauterine Insemination:
If you are highly sensitive to semen, and your body shows strong allergic reactions to it despite going for treatment, then the doctor will suggest you go for an Intrauterine or Artificial insemination to conceive. In this method, the doctor will inject isolated sperms (sperms without seminal fluid) into your body at the time of ovulation to increase chances of pregnancy.
The main aim of this method is to increase tolerance of semen in your body to avoid adverse reactions. Though, the exact mechanism of the treatment is still unclear, but health experts believe that regularly injecting sperm into the body produces antibodies against seminal proteins. However, please do not try this method without proper medical guidance, as it can have life-threatening consequences.
Sperm Allergy is indeed an awkward problem and as a couple, you need to be mature while you deal with such a sensitive issue. Consult a medical expert for a family planning strategy and how to avoid complications.
Did you suffer from an allergic reaction to sperm? What line of semen allergy treatment did you take? How did you partner help you overcome the condition? Tell us about it here. Help other women learn from your experience. Leave a comment in the section below. Fellow moms would love to hear from you.
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