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In TESA (or Testiculat Sperm Aspiration), a small amount of testis tissue is taken by biopsy under local anesthesia.. PESA – percutaneous epididymal sperm aspiration – is a similar procedure, but the sperm is taken from the epididymis, a duct found just behind the testicles, through which sperm passes on its way to the urethra.

How does TESA/PESA work?

Both TESA and PESA are usually carried out in conjunction with ICSI, to give the sperm the best possible chance of fertilising the egg. The procedure is carried out either on the day of egg collection or shortly before the IVF cycle and the sperm is frozen until it is needed.

The operations are very similar – In TESA a small amount of tissue from testis is biopsied, while PESA involves the insertion of a very fine needle into the treatment area. The needle is attached to a syringe, which is used to gently suck out the sperm. Both procedures are performed as day cases, so you are able to return home to your loved ones on the same day.

For frozen PESA/TESA, when the sperm is needed, it will be thawed and the best specimens will be injected directly into the egg, as in a regular ICSI treatment.


Why choose TESA/PESA?

Both TESA and PESA are suited for those couples where the man is has no sperm in the ejaculate. This could be due to a blockage, in which case PESA is usually the preferred treatment, or a problem with the actual production of sperm, when TESA is generally a better choice.

ICSI treatments performed with sperm retrieved using either TESA or PESA have the same success rate as regular ICSI treatments, so this can really offer hope to couples who previously thought they had no chance of having children.

Fertility treatment is always a very emotional process and it is important that you feel comfortable with both the people treating you and the clinical environment. At Orchid we aim to put you at your ease as much as possible – every member of our team is highly trained and experienced in helping people with fertility issues and there will always be someone on hand to answer any questions you may have.


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