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The SCD test helps detecting increased fragmentation of genetic material in sperm cells.

SCD test

DNA fragmentation of sperm cells may be one of the major causes of decreased fertility in men. It may also lead to abnormal early development of the foetus, and thereby miscarriage. It can be assessed using the SCD test.

SCD test

There are many methods to assess the degree of sperm cell DNA fragmentation. The two most popular methods are SCD and SCSA. At InviMed Clinics, we use SCD (Sperm Chromatin Dispersion), i.e. a sperm nuclear chromatin dispersion test, to assess sperm DNA fragmentation.

Sperm cell DNA fragmentation

Sperm with properly condensed sperm chromatin have adequate DNA protection against harmful agents, such as oxidative stress. In case of abnormalities in the sperm cell DNA, the integrity of the DNA may be reduced, resulting in its fragmentation. 

The effect of in vitro fertilization of an egg cell with sperm with a fragmentation of sperm cell chromatin may be:

  • abnormal zygote division and early embryonic development,
  • recurrent miscarriages.
  • an increased risk of genetic defects in the offspring.

SCD test result

The result of the sperm chromatin dispersion test is the so-called SDF (Sperm DNA Fragmentation) index:

  • SDF ≤ 30% - result within the range of normal,
  • SDF ≤ 30% - result outside the range of normal.

When to perform a SCD test?

The evaluation of sperm cell DNA fragmentation is recommended as a supplement to male infertility diagnostics. The SCD test is particularly recommended in the case of habitual miscarriages in the partner. More than half of all recurrent miscarriages are related to genetic defects of the fetus. One of the genetic factors on the male side, causing habitual miscarriages, is sperm DNA fragmentation. The cause of DNA fragmentation may be oxidative stress as well as damaged sperm chromatin repair mechanisms. Damaged sperm DNA is responsible for microdeletions and double-strand breaks in the chromosomes. Scientific research has shown correlations between the fragmentation of sperm DNA and blocking the development of the embryo, which resulted in a spontaneous miscarriage. Sperm cells with DNA fragmentation also increases the failure of the embryo implantation.

When to perform a SCD test?

  • in men with unknown cause of infertility,
  • in the case of indication for in vitro fertilization using ICSI method,
  • in men aged over 40, even if they have had children earlier,
  • in the case of low semen parameters,
  • in men exposed to toxic substances and factors that increase the risk of DNA damage (smoking, variocele, scrotal temperature rise, obesity, diabetes, chemotherapy and radiotherapy),
  • no embryo implementation after the In vitro procedure
  • in the case of abnormal sperm morphology (teratozoospermia)

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Basic information regarding the processing of personal data

Basic information regarding the processing of personal data Data controller: Medi Partner Sp. z o. o, ul. Cybernetyki 19, 02-677 Warsaw/ Purpose of processing: marketing of own products and services [including profiling], marketing of Medicover Polska* products and services [including profiling] /Legal basis for processing: Your consent/ Recipients of data: Entities processing personal data on behalf of Medi Partner Sp. z o.o. / Rights with regard to the processing of data: the right to withdraw consent to the processing of personal data, right of access to personal data, other rights, as referred to in the detailed information on processing.