Testicular Sperm Aspiration or TESA procedure is a sperm retrieval procedure used to treat issues of male infertility and to provide couples with novel assisted reproductive techniques like IVF-ICSI and IUI. It is a needle aspiration of the testes performed in order to find sperm directly and is especially used for men facing problems like obstructive Azoospermia, or the absence of sperm in the ejaculate.

The sperm retrieved through this procedure is then either preserved for later use or can be used in a current IVF-ICSI cycle. While the procedure can be and is used for both, obstructive and non-obstructive Azoospermia, the chances of Success of TESA are higher in obstructive Azoospermia.

For couples who are facing problems in natural conception owing factors of male infertility, TESA is a great way of fulfilling the dream of parenthood.

This surgical sperm retrieval procedure is used in men

If their testicles are not making enough sperm or Non-obstructive Azoospermia or
If due to some blockage, the sperms get blocked from passing out to the semen or Obstructive Azoospermia
Extremely poor sperm production can be a hindrance to their fertility. In such cases, TESA has been a major breakthrough in extracting the sperm directly from a man’s testis. Men with azoospermia can father a child if sperm is retrieved from their testis or epididymis. This procedure is used in men with non-obstructive Azoospermia, wherein no sperms can be retrieved from the epididymis.

How is TESA Done?

Testicular sperm aspiration is performed by inserting a needle into the testis and aspirating fluid and tissue using negative pressure. The sample is then processed to extract the sperm cells in the embryology laboratory using the ICSI or Intracytoplasmic sperm injection.

The sperm cells need not have to be mature and pass through epididymis to fertilize an egg. Since the testicular sperm is immature, they need ICSI, a technique in which a single sperm is taken from the semen and injected directly into the egg.

TESA can give some discomfort for a few days as it’s a slightly complex procedure. It is done under local anesthesia or sedation as per the patient’s preference in day care no need of any hospital stay. If TESA doesn’t provide enough sperm, testicular biopsy is needed in such cases.

Much speculations and concerns have been raised about the use of genetic material from a developing sperm cell. Also, there can be a chance that the cause of infertility can be transmitted to the progeny.