Effects of alcohol and cigarette consumption on human seminal quality



      To evaluate the effects of alcohol or cigarette consumption on seminal parameters in a large population of men attending an andrology laboratory.


      Analysis of ten years of data (1990–1999).


      Andrology and Reproduction Laboratory (Córdoba, Argentina).


      Patients (3,976) were grouped according to nonsmokers; ≤20 cigarettes/day; >20 cigarettes/day; nonalcohol consumers; ≤500 mL of wine (∼52 g of ethanol) or equivalent/day; and >500 mL of wine or equivalent/day. Patients who drank alcohol and smoked were also considered.


      A questionnaire was voluntarily filled out by patients. It provided data on drug consumption and genitourinary diseases.

      Main outcome measure(s)

      Seminal volume, sperm concentration, motility, viability, and morphology.


      No statistical differences in seminal parameters were found between the degrees of alcohol or tobacco consumption; so, independently of the degree of consumption patients were considered as smokers or alcohol consumers.


      Alcohol or cigarette consumption did not alter the seminal parameters. Nevertheless, when the patients with these two habits were compared to those without these habits, a significant reduction in seminal volume, sperm concentration, percentage of motile spermatozoa, and a significant increase of the nonmotile viable gametes were detected. The synergic or additive effect of these two toxic habits is discussed.


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