The testicles are the male reproductive organ. These oval-shaped organs are located in the scrotum just below the penis. The testicles have two primary functions: The first is to produce sperm and the second is to produce and discharge hormones, primarily testosterone. These two functions make them an indispensable part of the male reproductive system.
The testicles are continuously making sperm. Male testicles can produce up to 200,000 sperm per minute and can make several million sperm per day. This may seem like an overabundance, but each ejaculation releases anywhere between 20 and 300 million sperm cells, making all that hard work necessary. A full sperm production cycle can take 64 days and in that time the testicles will produce up to 8 billion sperm.
Androgens, the hormones produced in the testicles, play an important role in many aspects of a man’s life. These hormones control the development of masculine features. For instance, deeper voice and beard hair growth can be linked to androgens. The hormone called testosterone also plays a vital role in male reproduction. Testosterone drives genital growth and the sperm production that takes place in the testicles.
Maintaining good health is important to ensuring the testicles are able to perform their functions properly. Evidence shows that poor health can lead to lower sperm counts and weakened testosterone production. Some research shows that male infertility increases by 10 percent for every 20 pounds that a man is overweight. Unhealthy lifestyle factors like smoking, heavy drinking and stress can also affect the testicles’ ability to perform their functions.
Given the importance of testicle functions, it is important to pay attention to the diseases and conditions that occur in them. One of the most serious conditions is testicular cancer. This cancer is tends to affect younger men between 15 and 34 years of age, and although it is not common, it is important to be aware of it and check one’s testicles somewhat regularly. According to the American Cancer Society, about 410 deaths a year in the United Stated will be caused by this form of cancer.
Because the testicles are a part of the male reproductive system, a urologist is the doctor to see if any symptoms arise that indicate a problem. Men who have health concerns can make and appointment at St Pete Urology and meet a highly skilled uologist who is dedicated to improving reprouctive health and quality of life for his patients.