One of the tests to determine male fertility is testicular biopsy

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Testicular Biopsy

One of the tests to determine male fertility is testicular biopsy. Testicular biopsy is a procedure in which a small portion of testicle is removed for examination. The biopsy is performed by creating a small incision in the skin of the scrotum. A small piece of the testicle tissue is removed through the incision by snipping the sample off with small scissors. The test is usually performed when a semen analysis suggests that there is abnormal sperm,

semen quality pic

and other tests have not determined the cause. It may also be performed when testicular self-examination has revealed a lump. It can be done in many ways depending on the reason for the test.

Types of Biopsy

There is more than one type of testicular biopsy, the various biopsy procedures include:

  • Needle biopsy – in which a needle is used to remove a tiny sample of testicular tissue.

  • Biopsy with small scissors – in which, as the name suggest, a very small pair of scissors are used to cut out a small piece of tissue from the testicles

  • Open biopsy – which is more invasive than the other two biopsy procedures mentioned above. A cut is made in the skin of the scrotum under general anesthetic, and tissue is removed. This procedure is usually reserved for patients in whom testicular cancer is suspected.

The first two procedures are usually performed under local anesthetic. The patient may feel a sting as the needle administering the anesthetic goes in, but other than that he should not experience any pain.

Pre-Biopsy Instructions 

  • Adults: aspirin or medications that contain aspirin must not be taken at least a week prior to the procedure.

  • Children: The preparation you can provide for this or any test or procedure depends on your child’s age, previous experiences, and level of trust. Testicle biopsy is seldom performed in children younger than 12.

  • Reasons for testicular biopsy

  • To determine the cause of male infertility

  • To determine whether the lump is cancerous or benign.

  • To determine the cause of hormonal dysfunction.

semen quality pic

Risks associated with the procedure

There is a slight risk of bleeding or infection. The area may be sore for 2 to 3 days after the biopsy. The scrotum may swell or become discolored. This should clear up within a few days.

Post-procedure activities

  • Wear an athletic supporter for several days after the biopsy.

  • Avoid sexual activity for 1 to 2 weeks.

  • Use cold pack on and off for the first 24 hours may lessen the swelling and discomfort.

  • Avoid using aspirin or medicines that contain aspirin for 1 week after the procedure.


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