During normal fertilization, millions of sperms swim to fertilize an egg of which ultimately only one sperm penetrates the egg. In case of men with fertility problems, such as low sperm count or no sperm natural fertilization becomes difficult. Modern Fertility Treatments like ICSI (Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection) and In Vitro Fertilization(IVF) make it possible to extract a single sperm from the male and use it to fertilize the egg. Even in men who produce hardly any sperm, it is possible to overcome fertility problems using the latest sperm retrieval techniques.
In case of men who produce even a little amount of sperm it can be retrieved easily. In case of men who do not eject any sperm due to blocked vas deferens or a congenital defect, it can be collected surgically. The absence of sperm from a semen sample is known as Azoospermia.
- Obstructive Azoospermia is due to the blockage of vas deferens that carry sperm from testicles to penis. This blockage could be due to testicular cancer, due to vasectomy or could be a congenital disorder. Congenital disorder is associated with cystic fibrosis wherein the vas deferens is either malformed or absent. If you have been diagnosed with this congenital disorder, then it is advised to discuss with your specialist the risk of passing it on to your children who can advise you with the right treatment options.
- Non- Obstructive Azoospermia is caused by hormonal problems, testicular failure and varicocele. Testicular failure could be caused by chromosomal defects such as Klinefelter’s Syndrome or abnormalities with the Y chromosome. In case of chromosomal defects, there is a risk of the male child inheriting this disease. Hence it is advised to discuss the risks with your specialist who can suggest the right treatment method.
Obstructive Azoospermia can be overcome by surgical retrieval of sperm using the following techniques:
- PESA or Percutaneous Epididymal Sperm Aspiration
- TESA or Testicular Sperm Aspiration
- MESA or Microsurgical Epididymal Sperm Aspiration