When trying to conceive it is obviously necessary for both the man and the woman to be fertile. The woman needs to ovulate (and produce viable eggs) and the man needs to produce good quality sperm. Sperm quantity, mobility and motility can be affected by a number of factors (and if needs be they can be improved by taking pre-conception vitamins).
However, if you are trying to conceive but are not having any joy then as well as checking on female fertility by perhaps doing an FSH test, you may want to perform a sperm test. Semen analysis is usually carried out by a doctor or at a clinic but they may want you to wait for up to a year before they do any testing on either partner and even after that there may be a waiting list (for the UK particularly) for a Semen Analysis.
So there may be a number of situations where you will want to perform a sperm test in your own home. It is actually possible for you to do this by purchasing a home fertility kit. These are not expensive and are 97% accurate.
So if your partner is either reluctant to undergo a test at the doctors or clinic, or if he doesn’t have time to take out of his schedule to do this, or even if you just want to do a sperm test before you are going to try to get pregnant so that you now everything is in working order and you are not going to spend months in vain, then you can pick up one of these tests easily online and they often cost less than you would pay at a clinic (albeit a test at a clinic is likely to give more accurate results so you may want to do this if you have any doubts).
Some of these home sperm tests will tell you the concentration of sperm produced in a sample (i.e the number of sperm in a specific volume) and some of them will also tell you the motility of the sperm (how many of the sperm are alive and moving correctly), which is a vital factor on your ability to get pregnant.
The normal level of sperm in a fertile sperm sample is 20 million per mg. Levels below this are still viable but might make it harder to get pregnant. Some tests will just tell you if the concentration is above 20 million or below.
So, if you want a quick and easy way to test for male fertility issues without having to go to your doctor initially, then you may want to try one of the home fertility test kits.
Sperm takes 3 months to be ‘made’ in the body before it is used so in order to improve sperm quality it can take this long to actually see the results. Taking a course of pro-fertility multi-vitamins can have a great effect on the quality of sperm but it will take 3 months for the vitamins to take effect.
So if you do get bad results from a semen analysis then improvements are very possible over time.