Surgical Sperm Retrieval: New test could help predict success rate

6th December 2018 in Advice

This information was correct at the time of publishing. It may not reflect our current practices, prices or regulations.

If you aren’t producing any sperm in your semen, one of your options may be to undergo a procedure with us called Surgical Sperm Retrieval (SSR). There are various different techniques, but they all involve extracting sperm from areas within the testicles.

For some men, SSR is not successful – no viable sperm is found in the testicles which can be used to fertilise the egg through Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI). But now scientists in Canada have developed a new test which may help identify men for whom SSR will be of the most benefit.

Researchers identified two different markers in semen samples which could help indicate whether an SSR procedure is worth carrying out, helping men to avoid unnecessary procedures when it’s unlikely any viable sperm will be found.

Work is now underway to adapt the test to be used in fertility clinics, with researchers hopeful that it will be available within the next two years.

At Manchester Fertility our Consultant Urologist Dr Stephen Payne is a leading expert in the field of Surgical Sperm Retrieval, helping men who would otherwise need to use donor sperm to have a child of their own. We will only advise an SSR procedure if we believe it offers you a realistic chance of success.

Whether surgically-retrieved sperm fertilises the egg is dependent upon many different factors, not just relating to the sperm, including the number of eggs and egg quality for the treatment cycle, and whether your retrieved sperm survives the freeze/thaw process.

If you have any questions about SSR, and all treatments we offer if you have sperm disorders such as a low sperm count or poor sperm motility, please contact our friendly team on 0161 300 2737.

Last updated: 13th January 2020