Assessing Motility

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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Semen Analysis. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Assessing Motility

WHO 5th edition recommends reporting these categories of movement:
  • Progressive motility: Spermatozoa are moving actively (not necessarily rapidly), either linearly or in a large circle. Several examples of progressive motility can be seen in the attached video.
  • Non-progressive motility: There is an absence of progression, e.g., swimming in small circles; the head is barely moving as the result of the flagellar movements; only the flagellar movement is noted. An example of non-progressive motility can be viewed on the following page.
  • Immotility: Total absence of movement
Complete the assessment of progressive motility in the area of observation, followed by non-progressive motility, and finally immotility.
The lower reference limit for progressive motility is 32%. The lower reference limit for total motility (progressive + non-progressive) is 40 %.
This video and the video on the following page are used with the permission of Kokopelli Technologies, LLC.