Micro testicular sperm extraction (micro TESE) is a microsurgical technique used to retrieve sperm from the testes. It is a revolutionary treatment that serves to counter severe male factor infertility (azoospermia) caused by low sperm production.
In typical cases of nonobstructive azoospermia, the testicles harbour small pockets of sperm, characterised by prominent testicular tubules. During micro TESE, these tubules are carefully extracted and transferred to a petri dish containing culture media. An embryologist then examines the specimen for sperm, under a microscope. Once healthy sperm are identified, they are injected into a set of mature eggs for fertilisation.
Micro TESE is an advanced technique that presents better chances of finding healthy sperm than a random biopsy. The probability of finding sperm using micro TESE is more than 60%. Also, since micro TESE is best performed on the same day as an egg retrieval routine, sperm can be injected without being frozen beforehand, in turn, assuring optimal quality.
Micro TESE is an intricate procedure that marries skills of microsurgery with an understanding of testicular anatomy. The combination of using an operating microscope, dissecting testicular tubules and having trained embryologists means that testes are shielded from damage.