No sperm in the ejaculate
Azoospermia, or no sperm in the ejaculate, may be more common than you think. Around 4% of men who have a semen analysis are found to be azoospermic. Being diagnosed with azoospermia can be scary, and you may be worried about what this means for you and your fertility. However, with the correct investigations and treatment plan, many men with azoospermia go on to become fathers.
What is azoospermia?
If you are diagnosed with azoospermia, it means that no sperm was seen in your ejaculate. There are two types of azoospermia, obstructive and non-obstructive azoospermia. The type of azoospermia you have, and the underlying cause of this condition, will influence your treatment options. If you have azoospermia, we strongly recommend working closely with a urologist to optimise your chances of becoming a father.
Men who have obstructive azoospermia produce sperm in their testicles, but the sperm are unable to leave the body due to a blockage. This blockage could be anywhere along the reproductive tract from sperm maturation to ejaculation. Obstructive azoospermia can be caused by factors like injury, prior surgery, infection, or genetic abnormalities.
Often, men with obstructive azoospermia can have sperm collected directly from the reproductive tract or testicles through a surgical sperm retrieval. If you have been diagnosed with obstructive azoospermia, you should speak with a urologist about the best treatment options for you.
Non-obstructive azoospermia refers to a lack of sperm production. In these cases, the testicles either produce no sperm at all, or very few sperm that do not leave the body. Non-obstructive azoospermia can be caused by factors like varicoceles, genetic abnormalities, hormone imbalances, infections, undescended testicles, or injury.
Depending on the cause of the non-obstructive azoospermia, medication may help the body to start producing sperm. In other cases, a surgical sperm retrieval may successful collect sperm directly from the testicles. If you have been diagnosed with non-obstructive azoospermia, you should speak with a urologist to discuss the treatment options available to you.
Can’t speak highly enough of Claire and the whole Fertility Solutions team. Professional service, timely reporting of results and above all really personable and empathetic and Claire really cares which makes it all a bit easier
Couldn’t have been more helpful. Nothing seemed too much for them, were very accommodating with all our needs and last minute appointment changes. All staff are very friendly, approachable and more than happy to help/answer any questions we had.
After trying for a baby for five years and two failed IVF cycles we were advised by our clinic that this was likely caused by an egg quality issue. We were referred to Claire at Fertility solutions after seeking a second opinion. A semen culture test was performed which revealed an infection. Following two weeks of antibiotic treatment, we conceived naturally and now 7 weeks pregnant! We are beyond grateful to Claire and the team. She was professional, friendly and very efficient. Would recommend to everyone. Thank you
My wife and I had an initial consultation having been referred following tests and we took advantage of the incredibly reasonable and worthwhile consultation with Claire. She was so reassuring about the difficulties men can face and how to progress. Claire is so knowledgeable on the subject that we felt an ease listening to her advice. The consultation includes a follow up letter with clear advice on how to increase your chances of good quality sperm.
The process from start to finish was easy from easy booking and messaging via a portal and Claire is very responsive on emails.
I'd recommend it to couples who want to investigate male fertility and as they experts.
Sperm mapping and azoospermia
Sperm mapping, or fine-needle aspiration, is a technique that was pioneered by Consultant Urologist, Mr Jonathan Ramsay. This minimally invasive technique can be used before a surgical sperm retrieval, to identify areas in the testicle where sperm are being produced. This allows the medical team to predict how well a sperm retrieval will go beforehand.
The sperm mapping procedure is particularly useful for men diagnosed with non-obstructive azoospermia and has been shown to improve the rate of successful surgical sperm retrieval.
If you receive the diagnosis of azoospermia through a semen analysis performed at Fertility Solutions, we will explain your results to you and provide you with guidance and support. We would also strongly recommend that you seek the help of an experienced fertility urologist.
Being diagnosed with azoospermia does not necessarily mean you will never father children, and the urologist is best placed to investigate and treat the causes of this condition.
We understand that embarking on any treatment journey is daunting and fertility treatment is no different. The team at Fertility Solutions is here to guide you every step of the way. Our aim is to take the mystery away, help you make sense of the medical information and provide, simple, clear facts about what is possible for you.