Objective: To examine the outcomes of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) with testicular sperm retrieved from men with spinal cord injury. Design: Retrospective study. Setting: Private hospital-based infertility research laboratory. Patient(s): Twenty-two couples of whom one partner was a man with spinal cord injury (SCI). Intervention(s): Reviewing the outcomes of testicular sperm extraction (TESE)-ICSI. Main Outcome Measure(s): Testicular sperm retrieval rate, fertilization rate, pregnancy rate, comparison with patients with obstructive azoospermia. Result(s): Testicular sperm were retrieved from 19 of 22 (86%) patients with SCI. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection resulted in a fertilization rate of 236 of 364 (65%). Of 19 couples, 14 couples achieved 18 pregnancies, and 22 infants (14 singleton and 4 twin) were born. (Pregnancy per couple was 74% and that per ICSI was 54%). There was no significant difference in pregnancy rate at the first ICSI between SCI couples and obstructive azoospermia couples (68% SCI, 68% obstructive azoospermia). However, pregnancy rate per fresh testicular sperm-ICSI was significantly higher than that per frozen-thawed sperm-ICSI in SCI couples (64% SCI fresh, 25% SCI frozen-thawed) although no significant difference was seen in obstructive azoospermia couples (76% obstructive azoospermia fresh, 63% obstructive azoospermia frozen-thawed). There was no significant difference in pregnancy rate between fresh ET cycle and frozen-thawed ET cycle in SCI couples. Conclusion(s): Testicular sperm in men with SCI may possess disadvantages in freezing and thawing compared with that in men with obstructive azoospermia. Fresh testicular sperm-ICSI may offer optimum outcome for SCI couples desirous of pregnancy. © 2009 American Society for Reproductive Medicine.
Kanto, S., Uto, H., Toya, M., Ohnuma, T., Arai, Y., & Kyono, K. (2009). Fresh testicular sperm retrieved from men with spinal cord injury retains equal fecundity to that from men with obstructive azoospermia via intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Fertility and Sterility, 92(4), 1333–1336. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.07.1776