Couples were followed up for 37 months and were compared with women who had conceived naturally. The study found that a quarter of infertile women and a fifth of infertile men had antibodies. Among infertile couples with IgG antibodies - a sign of previous or persistent chlamydia infection - 6.8 per cent of women and 7.1 per cent of men carried the chlamydia DNA in their urine, which suggested they had an active infection.
Professor Jan Olofsson, who headed the research team said their research showed that if a man had chlamydia antibodies a couple's chance of conceiving was significantly reduced and that chlamydia, known to affect female fertility had now also been shown that as a potentially serious issue for men too.
The research showed the importance of screening for chlamydia for both partners at fertility clinics.
The study found that once affected women became pregnant the IgG antibodies did not put their pregnancy at risk.
Article source: Olofsson J 2005. Demonstration of Chlamydia trachomatis IgG antibodies in the male partner of the infertile couple is correlated with a reduced likelihood of achieving pregnancy. Human Reproduction. Vol 19. No 5. Pp 1121-1126.