Haifa hospital performs marathon of male fertility surgeries

About half of them now have significant hope that they can become biological parents, the hospital said.

February 7, 2017 22:07
1 minute read.
Doctors perform surgery [illustrative].

Doctors perform surgery [illustrative].. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center performed a five-day “marathon” of rare microsurgery procedures on 11 men desperate to produce a biological child who lacked even the minimum amount of sperm needed to father a child.

About half of them now have significant hope that they can become biological parents, the hospital said.

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One out of 200 men suffer from a complete lack of sperm and are technically concerned sterile, a condition known as azoospermia. But performing microsurgery, having a lab worker examine testicular tissue under a microscope, followed by injecting any found sperm into ova, can produce a baby.

A young couple from the North tried for a pregnancy for two years without success.

When they went for medical examinations, it was discovered that the husband had no sperm. As part of last week’s surgery marathon, he underwent an operation to search for any individual sperm. A lab worker found a few, which were used to fertilize his wife’s ova by in-vitro fertilization. Neuro- urologists, gynecologists, fertility specialists and surgeons were involved in the project.

Dr. Ra’anan Tal, head of the male fertility lab, removed testicular tissue from all 11 men and sent it to a laboratory technician in the surgical theater to search for hidden sperm. Of the 11, sperm were found in five.

Rambam is the only place in northern Israel to offer such treatment and the only hospital in the country that can carry out so many procedures with major logistical challenges within such a short time, Tal said.

Without the procedure, the women would have to adopt to become parents, or go for a sperm donation to become pregnant, preventing their husbands from becoming biological fathers.

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