Covid-19 causes testicular damage and atrophy




Researchers from the Department of Microbiology of the
University of Hong Kong
has seen that the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, responsible for Covid-19, can cause acute testicular damage, chronic asymmetric testicular atrophy, and hormonal changes in hamsters despite mild pneumonia.

Some patients who have had Covid-19 have reported testicular pain, according to some studies, and autopsies of men who died from the disease showed orchitis with extensive damage to testicular cells. However, researchers have not consistently found SARS-CoV-2 in semen samples.

Health professionals must take into account that men convalescing from Covid-19 may have hypogonadism or low sexual desire and subfertility. According to Kwok-yung Yuen, who led the study published in
«Journal Clinical Infectious Diseases»
«vaccination against Covid-19 can prevent this complication».

researchers analyzed testicular and hormonal changes of the virus-infected hamsters administered intranasally or directly testicularly using the influenza virus in the control group.

They found that hamsters infected with viruses developed pneumonia. But an intranasal inoculation with SARS-CoV-2 was enough to cause an acute decline in sperm count and serum testosterone from four to seven days.

Acute testicular inflammation, hemorrhage and necrosis of the seminiferous tubules, and impaired spermatogenesis

In their study, hamsters infected with SARS-CoV-2 developed testicular atrophy with reduced testicular size and weight. Furthermore, they saw a marked decrease in the level of serum sex hormones between 42 to 120 days after infection. The most evident symptoms observed were: acute testicular inflammation, hemorrhage and necrosis of the seminiferous tubules and alteration of spermatogenesis.

Inflammation, degeneration, and necrosis of testicular tissue persisted in some cases up to 120 days after infection. .

Likewise, intranasal challenge with omicron and delta variants induced similar testicular changes.

The control group of hamsters inoculated with the virus of the influenza A administered intranasally or intratesticularly did not show infection or testicular damage.

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