Men’s testicular health at risk from repeated COVID infections Dr Keith Wedderburn – Jamaica Gleaner


Dr Keith Wedderburn, managing director of the Montego Hospital and Urology Centre in St James, is warning that even if men contract COVID-19 and recover enough to develop antibodies, repeated bouts of illness from the virus can still put their testicular health at risk.

Wedderburn, who is also the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Mt Salem-based facility, was speaking during Thursdays Kiwanis Club of Montego Bay meeting, which was held under the theme The power of manhood. This was in recognition of the global Movember campaign, which focuses annually on awareness of mens health issues during the month of November.

You can get natural immunity from getting the COVID-19 virus, or you can get immunity from being vaccinated. But this immunity decreases over a period of time. So if it goes down too low and you get another infection from the COVID virus, it can affect your testes, said Wedderburn.

He addressed several concerns which have arisen about COVID-19 vaccination, which have led to vaccine hesitancy. This includes the claim that the vaccine can negatively affect a mans reproductive health. Wedderburn compared the possible effect of COVID-19 on mens testes to that of mumps, a viral illness that most frequently affects children under 10 years old.

During this pandemic, we have had people talking about how the vaccine can cause you not to have an erection or to make enough sperm. But it is just like with mumps, which is a virus that can affect the testes. For men who came down with mumps as children, the mumps damaged the sperm-producing cells in the testes and it can also damage the hormone-producing cells, said Wedderburn.

Viruses on a whole can damage the testes, and that is why it is very important for men to get their vaccine. As far as the possibility of the COVID vaccine affecting the male genitalia, studies have been done in Miami concerning Pfizer and Moderna, and none of these studies have come up with men taking these vaccines and having any problem with their erection or their fertility, added Wedderburn.

In statistics released on Thursday, Jamaica has, to date, recorded 90,005 COVID-19 cases since the onset of the virus in March 2020. Of that number, 38,807 men have contracted the disease, compared to 51,195 women.

There have been 2,322 recorded deaths in relation to COVID-19. To date, the Ministry of Health and Wellness has administered more than a million vaccinations to the populace, surpassing the target of one million COVID vaccine jabs which the Government aimed to administer by the end of November.

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Men's testicular health at risk from repeated COVID infections Dr Keith Wedderburn - Jamaica Gleaner

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