Physiological basis of the test
It should be noted that conducting such a study had a whole background. The first time the movement of spermatozoa in the mucus of the cervix was discovered in 1866. For many years, the peculiarities of this movement and the relationship between the female and male substances have not been given attention. And only in 1913 the study of their mutual influence began. Until now, there have been various modifications to the study of such compatibility. But the very essence of the test, namely the determination of the motility of the spermatozoa in the mucus after the sexual intercourse, remains the same.
So, let's remind that the cervical canal (or as it is also called the cervical canal) is the first stage of the sperm movement. Slime on the neck is controlled by female hormones. In the first phase of the cycle, estrogens contribute to the formation of an abundant amount of mucus, and in the second, progesterone thickens it. The composition of cervical mucus may be a little tubal, endometrial, follicular fluid. It contains both leukocytes and dead endometrial cells. That is, mucus is a substance that consists of 50% of water. Cycle changes affect the mobility and viability of sperm in the cervix, culminating in the period of ovulation. Thus, mucus on spermatozoa acts like this:
- Creates conditions for their penetration during the ovulation period or prevents it in other periods.
- Protects them, creates a reservoir for them.
- Starts the reaction of changing the sperm during the passage of the uterine cavity.
It is important to carry out a postcoital test in the ovulatory period, when the most favorable conditions for spermatozoa are created in the female body.
The acidity (pH) of the mucus is normally 6. 4-8. 0. Deviations from normal affect sperm motility: the acidic medium makes them immobile, alkaline increases the activity. By the way, a significant reduction in the pH of cervical mucus in most cases is associated with bacterial infections.
So, cervical mucus is favorable for the activity of spermatozoa for a limited time. Therefore, the postcoital test should be performed according to the recommendations of gynecologists four to six hours after sexual intercourse. And WHO experts advise it to do in the interval of 9 to 24 hours after unprotected intercourse.
Compatibility test results
His goal is not only the calculation of active-mobile spermatozoa, but also the evaluation of their survival after sexual intercourse.
The absence of spermatozoa as a result of the test can be associated with malfunctions of ejaculation, their non-occurrence in the female reproductive tract.
It is worth knowing that post-coital test for infertility is considered the most "whimsical" method of research. The cause of a negative result is the later conduct of the study, inflammatory processes. Therefore, it must be carried out repeatedly and not be upset by the first negative outcome. In this case, it is necessary to test again, already in the next cycle, more accurately determining the favorable period for manipulation. Sometimes this test is performed in vitro.
To exclude immune disorders, that is, the presence of antisperm antibodies in mucus or semen, it is necessary to conduct an additional examination. It includes a MAR test, an ACAT blood level test.
If the pair compatibility test repeatedly gives a negative result, desensitizing therapy is recommended. Its essence is the termination of contact of mucus with sperm for several months. When this does not work, you can also try IVF.
Preparing for testing
To get a reliable test result from the first time, you need to prepare it correctly. And this is not only the correct definition of the procedure time. Doctors advise the couple to check sexual intercourse for two or three days to refrain from sex, do not use during this period lubricants and vaginal medications. Also, do not take hot baths on the day of testing.