Sperm Mapping for the Future

Submitted by Angie

Technically, this should be called testicular mapping, but sperm mapping does sound a little cooler. A new study published in the journal, Bone Marrow Transplantation talks about the procedure.

Called FNA Sperm Mapping, developed by Dr. Paul Turek. Before the era of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), you needed a lot of sperm to get somebody pregnant. If you had very few sperm, it generally wasn’t enough – even for IVF.

But with the magic ICSI, docs only need live sperm per egg. And I didn’t know this part – many men who have been diagnosed with non-obstructive azoospermia either due to the pathological conditions known as hypospermatogenesis, maturation arrest or Sertoli-cell only syndrome (germinal cell aplasia) have been found to have small “pockets” of sperm production within the testicles.

Pockets of sperm –what a clever phrase. Anyway, the same goes for men who survive cancer treatment. They usually have no sperm in the ejaculate, but they may have small numbers of sperm in the testis, too few to get into the ejaculate.

Sperm “mapping” is a technical advance that has allowed men who have no sperm in the ejaculate to have children. It involves non-surgical needle sampling of the testis to determine if and where sperm are located in the testis. Such sperm can then be retrieved for use with assisted reproduction. This is great news for lots of famil

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