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In the initial steps of the study, scientists analysed testicular tissues of six men who died of Covid-19 infection. (Representative image)

In the initial steps of the study, scientists analysed testicular tissues of six men who died of Covid-19 infection.

A team of researchers at the University of Miami in the United States has discovered that Covid-19 infection can cause problems related to the male reproductive system. The scientists found that in one of the subjects of their study, the Covid-19 virus was still present in his testicles even after the infection had cleared up. Two other patients had developed severe erectile dysfunction after their recovery from Covid-19. However, the research is a preliminary study and the studied sample size was small.

In the initial steps of the study, scientists analysed testicular tissues of six men who died of Covid-19 infection. The researchers found that one of the men had the Covid-19 virus present in his testicles, while three others had their sperm levels decreased after the infection. In a patient who survived the Covid-19 infection, the coronavirus was present in his testicles despite that the infection had cleared up. The scientists took tissue samples from two patients seeking penile implants and analysed them. The researchers found that even after nine months of their infection, the virus was present in their penises and reduced the blood supply reaching the male reproductive part. This effect caused severe erectile dysfunction in the two men even after their recovery.

According to Ranjith Ramasamy, an associate professor of Urology at the University of Miami, the study is just the first step in understanding how the Covid-19 virus affects men’s reproductive health. Ramasamy is one of the authors of the study that was published on May 7 in the World Journal of Men’s Health. The researchers say that the study is the first to detect the presence of the coronavirus in the human penis.

“These findings are not entirely surprising. After all, scientists know other viruses invade the testicles and affect sperm production and fertility,” Ramasamy said in a statement. The other viruses that can affect sperm production after infection include mumps and Zika viruses.

According to the researchers, while the Covid-19 virus can pose a risk to men’s reproductive health, the vaccines are entirely safe for the male reproductive system.

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