Men who are involuntarily childless due to subfertility are at a significantly lower risk of developing prostate cancer, according to a recently released study.

Around one in seven couples have problems conceiving despite trying for at least a year. In roughly half of cases, the childlessness is due to the man’s reduced fertility.  Subfertility is defined as being less than normally fertile though still capable of reproducing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 18 percent of men are diagnosed with male-related infertility problem.

But, there is one slight advantage for men who suffer from this condition, researchers say.

Scientists at Lund University in Sweden found that subfertile men who could not have a child were at nearly 50 percent lower risk of suffering from prostate cancer than men who have fathered at least one child. The study involved 450 men with prostate cancer along with 450 men who did not have the cancer.

Researchers found that the connection between reduced prostate cancer risk and subfertility is stronger than the connection between prostate cancer and other factors previously studied, for example diet, smoking, alcohol consumption and a number of different diseases.

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