When the coronavirus enters the body, it begins to replicate and spread through the body, infecting the cells ofall the organs it manages to reach, including the genitals.
A study developed by scientists at the University of Miami and published in the magazine The World Journal of Men’s Health, certified the presence of remains of SARS-CoV-2 in the testicles of several patients, some of them deceased and others recovered from the disease.
“SARS-CoV-2 is a virus that circulates throughout the body and logically infects all organs from lung to brain, intestine and all the glands with specific receptors ”, explains Dr. Francois Peinado, head of the Urology service at the Ruber Juan Bravo hospital complex.
“As has been found in semen, the testicle is a very related organ for the receptors it has and many times an inflammatory response occurs”, adds Peinado.
A study conducted early in the pandemic by Chinese scientists at the Shangqiu Municipal Hospital and published in May, found remains of the coronavirus in semen samples from six patients of the 38 who participated in the research.
The infectivity of the coronavirus in the male genitalia is therefore not in doubt, but there are less certainty about the potential consequences of this infection in patients who overcome the disease.
The University of Miami researchers consider that their findings “suggest a possible mechanism of how Covid-19 can cause infertility“And consider that” there could be concerns about sexual transmission in infected patients. ”
Several other viruses are known to affect spermatogenesis and fertility, including mumps. “It could be that Covid-19 works in a similar way, causing an inflammatory process,” hypothesizes the first author of the study, Justin K. Achua.
“Mumps has been shown to enter the testicles, causing inflammation of the same and leading to impaired sperm production in about 10 to 20 percent of men who become infected. Evaluating the autopsy findings, we saw that the Covid-19 testicles had signs of inflammation with white blood cells invading the testicles, “he argues in this regard.
For Dr. Peinado, it cannot be ruled out that the coronavirus infection of the cells of the male genitalia may lead to some of these problems in the future, but he emphasizes that, to date, there is no evidence in that direction.
“It is one thing for your presence to be found and verified and Another thing is that it produces a disease of a sexual nature or an impairment to fertility”, Declares the urologist. “Obviously you have to wait a long time because new things are being discovered every day, but in relation to the male sexual apparatus, there is nothing proven.”
“At the moment you have to be cautious and do not alarm”Adds Peinado.