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Sperm Retrieval Techniques

if a man has trouble getting a woman

pregnant he may have a condition known

as infertility his doctor may recommend

a procedure to collect his sperm so it

can be used to help him father a child

the male reproductive system includes

the testicles also known as testes which

are two glands in a pouch of skin called

the scrotum the testicles normally

produce and store reproductive cells

called sperm the scrotum is outside the

body which keeps the testicles cool

enough to make sperm connected to each

testicle is a mass of coiled tubes

called the epididymis each epididymis

stores immature sperm while they

continue to develop during sex sperm

travel through a tube attached to the

epididymis called the vas deferens

to another tube called the ejaculatory

duct their sperm mix with fluid from two

glands called seminal vesicles

as well as the prostate gland now called

semen this fluid mixture exits the man's

body through the urethra the tube inside

the penis that usually carries urine if

a man has sex with a woman this process

called ejaculation deposits semen in her

vagina semen contain tens of millions of

sperm from the vagina the sperm in the

semen can travel to and fertilize an egg

from the woman's body fertilization of

the egg marks the beginning of human

development during pregnancy sperm

retrieval and collection are usually

performed for a condition called

azoospermia where a man has no

measurable amounts of sperm in his semen

there are two types of azoospermia the

first type called obstructive

azoospermia occurs when the pathway of

sperm out of the body is blocked the

second type of a ZOA sperm Mia called

non-obstructive azoospermia occurs when

the testicles produce little or no sperm

there are several procedures to remove

fluid from a testicle or an epididymis

to see if it contains healthy sperm

during percutaneous procedures sperm are

removed through the skin of the scrotum

without making an incision for example

during a percutaneous epididymal sperm

aspiration or Pisa the surgeon will

insert a syringe into the epididymis

through the skin fluid from inside the

epididymis will be drawn into the

syringe or during a testicular sperm

aspiration or Tisa the doctor will

insert a syringe into the testicle

through the skin fluid from inside the

testicle will be drawn into the syringe

if the fluid contains sperm it can be

saved for a later procedure to fertilize

an egg if the fluid retrieved through a

percutaneous procedure doesn't contain

any sperm an open sperm retrieval

procedure may be done to find other

areas in the epididymis or testicle more

likely to contain sperm in any of the

open procedures the surgeon will begin

by making an incision in the scrotum the

testicle and epididymis will be pulled

through the skin incision and another

incision will be made in the outer

tissue covering the epididymis and

testicle during an open fine needle

aspiration the surgeon will insert a

needle into several areas of the

epididymis each time the needle is

inserted fluid will be removed during a

micro surgical epididymal sperm

aspiration or Mesa the surgeon will use

an operating microscope to get a

magnified view of the epididymis the

surgeon will make a tiny incision in the

thin tissue covering the epididymis to

reveal the coiled tubes inside then a

tiny hollow tube called a micropipette

will be used to puncture one or more of

the coiled tubes and remove fluid from

inside it

after removing the fluid the tissue

covering the epididymis will be closed

with sutures

another open procedure is called

microsurgical testicular sperm

extraction or micro Tessie in this

procedure the surgeon will make a small

incision in the tissue covering the

testicle instead of the epididymis next

the surgeon will use an operating

microscope to look at the tiny tubes

inside the testicle a tissue sample of

the tubes most likely to contain healthy

sperm will be removed the sample will be

examined under a microscope to see if it

contains healthy sperm if no sperm are

found more samples will be removed and

examined once sperm are found the tissue

sample will be stored for later use then

the tissue covering the testicle will be

closed with sutures after all of these

open procedures the surgeon will close

the tissue covering the epididymis and

testicle with sutures

finally the skin incision in the scrotum

will also be closed with sutures the

collected sperm will allow a man to

father a child through intracytoplasmic

sperm injection during this procedure a

sperm cell will be injected directly

into a woman's egg to fertilize it

if the collected sperm are not used

right away they can be frozen for use at

a later date