Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

, Volume 30, Issue 4, pp 593–599 | Cite as

Effects of supplement therapy on sperm parameters, protamine content and acrosomal integrity of varicocelectomized subjects

  • Gholamabbas Azizollahi
  • Saeid Azizollahi
  • Homayoon Babaei
  • Mohammadali Kianinejad
  • Mohammad Reza Baneshi
  • Seyed Noureddin Nematollahi-mahaniEmail author
Gonadal Physiology and Disease



Surgical repair of varicocele has long been a procedure to correct spermatogenesis. However, the outcome has been reported to be inadequate. We combined varicocelectomy with supplement therapy to evaluate the concurrent effect of these procedures.


A prospective randomized controlled study was undertaken to investigate the effects of zinc sulfate, folic acid and zinc sulfate/folic acid on sperm quality, protamine content and acrosomal integrity following surgical repair of varicocele. Male subjects with palpable varicocele were included in the study and randomized into four groups. Subjects received Zinc sulfate, Follic acid, Zinc sulfate/Follic acid or placebo for 6 months. A semen sample was obtained before surgery and 3 and 6 months after surgical repair. Semen samples were evaluated for sperm parameters as well as chromatin content and acrosomal integrity.


Most of the evaluated parameters showed a mild improvement after varicocelectomy in the placebo group. Interestingly, co-administration of Zinc sulfate and folic acid improved most factors significantly. Folic acid administration but not zinc sulfate could increase sperm number. Hence, Zinc sulfate was better than folic acid when change in morphology was assessed, and none of them was significantly effective in sperm motility. In Zinc sulfate and Follic acid groups, protamine content and halo formation rate significantly improved.


We may conclude that co-administration of zinc and folic acid significantly improved sperm parameters and increased varicocelectomy outcomes. So, medical treatment with compatible drugs after surgery might be advantageous for obtaining acceptable results.


Zinc sulfate Folic acid Sperm parameters Protamine Acrosomal integrity Varicocelectomy 



Kerman medical University infertility center members are acknowledged for their warm cooperation in this study

Declaration of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gholamabbas Azizollahi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Saeid Azizollahi
    • 3
  • Homayoon Babaei
    • 4
  • Mohammadali Kianinejad
    • 5
  • Mohammad Reza Baneshi
    • 6
  • Seyed Noureddin Nematollahi-mahani
    • 2
    • 7
    • 8
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Urology, Afzalipour School of MedicineKerman University of Medical SciencesKermanIran
  2. 2.Physiology Research CenterKerman University of Medical SciencesKermanIran
  3. 3.Department of Anatomy, Division of Reproductive BiologyTehran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  4. 4.Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineShahid Bahonar University of KermanKermanIran
  5. 5.Food and Drug Laboratory, Vice Chancellor of Food and DrugKerman University of Medical SciencesKermanIran
  6. 6.Research Center for Modeling in HealthKerman University of Medical SciencesKermanIran
  7. 7.Department of Anatomy, Afzalipour School of MedicineKerman University of Medical SciencesKermanIran
  8. 8.Afzal Resaerch Institute (NGO)KermanIran

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