Effect of methylene blue, indigo carmine and renografin on human sperm motility
Sheynkin,Yefim R.; Stamm,Christopher; Li,Philip S.; Goldstein,Marc
Urology 53(1): 214-217
Publication date: 1999
To evaluate the effect of commonly used intraoperative vasography and tissue staining agents, indigo carmine, methylene blue, and Renografin, on sperm motility.
Semen from 20 healthy men was obtained after 2 to 4 days of abstinence. Sperm motility was initially evaluated in each specimen. Standard solutions of indigo carmine, methylene blue, and Renografin-60 were diluted 2× and 4× with lactated Ringer's solution. Equal aliquots of sperm were mixed with undiluted and diluted drugs, and sperm motility was assessed.
Initial mean sperm motility was 70.3% ± 3.0%. Undiluted methylene blue and Renografin severely depressed sperm motility to 1.1% ± 0.5% and 2.3% ± 0.7%, respectively (P <0.05). Diluted methylene blue depressed motility to 4.9% ± 1.8% and 11.2% ± 3.0% (P < 0.05). Diluted Renografin depressed motility to 25.1% ± 4.1% and 55.3% ± 3.3% (P < 0.05). Although undiluted and 2×-diluted indigo carmine moderately decreased sperm motility (48.9% ± 3.2% and 61.7% ± 3.0%, P < 0.05), 4×-diluted indigo carmine had minimal effect on sperm motility (67.3% ± 2.8%, P > 0.05). Lactated Ringer's solution had no effect on sperm motility.
We found a severe, immediate reduction in sperm motility after exposure to undiluted standard solutions of methylene blue and Renografin. Dilution of Renografin significantly decreased its negative impact on the sperm motility, whereas the adverse effect of methylene blue remained fairly constant even with increasing dilution. Sperm motility should be assessed prior to application of these agents. Sperm should be aspirated for immediate use and/or cryopreservation prior to the use of these agents. Indigo carmine may be safely used as a tissue stain or vasography agent with a minimal effect on sperm motility in dilutions of 4× and higher.