Article

Diagnostic epididymal and testicular sperm recovery and genetic aspects in azoospermic men

University of Gothenburg, Goeteborg, Västra Götaland, Sweden
Human Reproduction (Impact Factor: 4.59). 02/1999; 14(1). DOI: 10.1093/humrep/14.1.118
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ABSTRACT Various procedures for sperm recovery in azoospermic men have been described, from open testicular biopsy to simple needle aspiration from the epididymis and the testis. Fifty-one obstructive and 86 non-obstructive azoospermic men were treated to compare the recovery of spermatozoa obtained by percutaneous aspiration from the epididymis (PESA) and aspiration/extraction from the testis (TESA, TESE) with histopathology. If TESA failed, the work up proceeded with TESE. All patients were karyotyped. Spermatozoa were recovered by PESA or TESA in all obstructive men (51/51 patients). In 22 out of 86 patients with non-obstructive azoospermia, testicular spermatozoa could be successfully recovered by TESA. In five additional patients TESE was successful in recovering spermatozoa where TESA had failed. In 43 patients, neither TESA nor TESE was successful. Sixteen patients chose not to proceed with TESE. Seven out of 86 patients had an abnormal karyotype in the non-obstructive group (8%), none in the obstructive group. In the non-obstructive patient group testicular histopathology showed hypospermatogenesis, incomplete maturation arrest and germ cell aplasia with focal spermatogenesis in cases where spermatozoa were recovered and complete germ cell aplasia, complete maturation arrest and fibrosis in cases where no spermatozoa were found. Spermatozoa were recovered by PESA or TESA from all patients with obstructive azoospermia and from ~40% of patients with non-obstructive azoospermia by TESA or TESE. Retrieval of viable spermatozoa in the infertility work-up was highly predictable for sperm recovery in subsequent ICSI cycles. TESA performed under local anaesthesia seems almost as effective as more invasive procedures in recovering testicular spermatozoa, both in obstructive and non-obstructive azoospermic men.

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