Testicular Sperm Extraction

Having a baby after vasectomy is possible. Testicular sperm extraction (TESE) can provide another option if vasectomy reversal is not successful.


When Vasectomy Reversal Fails

A vasectomy is when the vans deferns is severed, preventing sperm from mixing with semen prior to ejaculation. Three to six weeks following the procedure, your fertility specialist will conduct a semen analysis to look for sperm. It may take up to a year for sperm to appear.If multiple blockages have formed, a vasectomy reversal may not be successful.


What is Testicular Sperm Extraction?

If sperm is not detected in the semen, testicular sperm extraction (TESE) is a procedure that collects sperm directly from the testes. Following the procedure, you may cryopreserve, or freeze, your sperm for your reproductive endocrinologist to use in future in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures. TESE can be performed as a scheduled procedure or coordinated with your partner’s egg retrieval procedure for IVF.


Testicular Sperm Extraction Procedure

The TESE procedure is usually performed under general anesthesia. A small incision is made in the testis, allowing your reproductive endocrinologist to assess the tubules for the presence of sperm. Tissues will be retrieved and analyzed. Any sperm identified can be frozen and used for in vitro fertilization.


Recovering from Testicular Sperm Extraction

TESE is an outpatient procedure, so you will be able to go home that same day. However, you should make arrangements for someone to drive you. Your reproductive endocrinologist will place a dressing around your scrotum with scrotal support underwear to keep the dressing in place.

For a few days following the TESE procedure, you may experience mild discomfort and tenderness in your scrotum. Your penis and scrotum may be swollen, and the scrotum could appear bruised. While all of this is normal, you should contact your fertility specialist if you are concerned or have any questions.


Caring for Your Scrotum

You may resume most normal activities, including showering, after three days. However, limit your level of activity if any new pain develops until it subsides. Do not soak in a bath tub, pool or hot tub for two weeks. Also, you should avoid lifting objects heavier than ten pounds for the first couple weeks following the TESE procedure. Sexual activity may be resumed after one week.

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