Testicular Sperm Extraction (TESE) involves minor surgery on the scrotum for collection of sperm from testicular tissue biopsies. Microscopic examination of the tissue helps with identification and isolation of single immature sperms from the reproductive tract (where normally sperms are formed and stored).
TESE-isolated sperms have not completed their maturation process, and therefore, they are unable to swim and fertilize an egg. Usually, only a small number of sperms is recovered this way, and In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF) with Intra-Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) is the only choice for assisted reproduction for these cases.
Testicular biopsies are collected through a very small incision in the scrotum under local anesthesia and conscious sedation. When enough samples are taken, all layers of testicle and scrotum are carefully closed up with fine sutures.
After recovery from TESE, you will feel some pain, which can be overcome by painkillers and the use of an ice pack for numbness. After the procedure, you will need to take the rest of the day off. However, with the scrotum being one of the fastest recovering parts of the human body, you will feel well very soon and within 10 days, completely healed.
The obtained testicular biopsies are processed and examined under a microscope and individual sperms are extracted by one of our technologists. If the numbers are sufficient, the extracted sperms can be frozen down for later use with a planned IVF with ICSI. However, the quality of thawed testicular sperms may not be optimal.
Alternatively, if sperm production is occurring, but the amounts are low, the procedure can be coordinated and repeated on the day of maternal egg retrieval. The freshly isolated sperms will be then used immediately for ICSI.