The Effect of Saffron on Semen Analysis in Infertile Men with Clinical Varicocele After Varicocelectomy

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Background: Infertility affects 15% of couples and varicocele is the most common cause of male infertility. Oxidative stress is recommended as a possible mechanism of infertility. Crocus sativus (saffron) has been recognized as having antioxidative properties and is presumed to improve sperm parameters. Objectives: The present study aims to evaluate the effect of saffron on semen analysis of infertile men with clinical varicocele after varicocelectomy. Methods: In this randomized clinical trial, 48 infertile men candidates for varicocelectomy were randomly assigned to receive 60 mg edible saffron capsules once every other day (n = 27) or a similar regimen of placebo (n = 21) for 6 months. The two groups were compared for changes in semen parameters. Results: There was no significant difference between groups in semen parameters before treatment as well as in semen volume, morphology, and sperm count post-treatment, but motility was significantly higher in the saffron group (30.00 ± 14.46 vs. 21.71 ± 11.45; P = 0.03). There was one (3.7%) complication in the saffron group. Conclusions: Our results showed that except improving sperm motility, saffron has no effect on other semen parameters in infertile men with clinical varicocele after varicocelectomy.