What is TESA?
Testicular Sperm Aspiration (TESA) is a simple method wherein sperm is collected directly from the testes in male patients, who have obstructive azoospermia. Male patients with this issue may create sperm at a normal rate, but a blockage may obstruct the sperm from reaching the semen.
This is a minimally invasive procedure, where the doctor inserts a needle into the anesthetically numbed scrotum and suctions out sperm through a syringe. No stitches are required in this procedure. If the doctor is unable to recover sperm, then the next recommended step for male infertility treatment is Microsurgical Testicular Sperm Extraction or MicroTESE.
What is MicroTESE?
Microsurgical Testicular Sperm Extraction (microTESE) is a minimally invasive surgical method to retrieve sperm from the seminiferous tubules of a male’s testes. It is used in men with non-obstructive azoospermia, which is when the male patient cannot produce a detectable amount of sperm in his semen.
When does one need MicroTESE?
- For male infertility treatment, wherein the male patient may have an adequate level of testosterone in his blood but other tests indicate lower than normal amounts of sperm count.
- If the male patient remains Azoospermic even after Azoospermia treatment and the testosterone levels have been normal for at least four months.
- If the male patient needs sperm for IVF, one may require more than one MicroTESE procedure.
Making MicroTESE successful
To undergo successful male infertility treatment with MicroTESE, the male patient requires the aid of a skilful surgeon as well as an andrologist for male fertility tests, diagnosis and treatment.
During the procedure, the male patient will be under the influence of general Anaesthesia and will be unconscious. The doctor will open the testicles with a small incision made in the midline of the scrotum. Through this cut, the doctor will take out sample tissue that may contain sperm. The wound will then be finely stitched.
The tissue will later be examined to check the sperm quantity and quality. If sperm is found, they will be preserved for IVF (if chosen) or for other male fertility tests.
What are the risks involved?
Most surgeries have risks involved, many of which never come to light when performed under the right conditions and the right surgeon.
However, here are some common risks involved with MicroTESE:
- Lack of sperm
- Damage to the testicle (rare)
Recovering after the procedure
Male patients who have infertility issues and who have been treated with MicroTESE male infertility treatment tend to recover faster and experience very little pain after surgery. One must also note that the scrotum is one of the fastest healing parts of the body.