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Urology. 2013 Feb;81(2):288-92. doi: 10.1016/j.urology.2012.10.038.

Predictors of spermatogenesis in orchiectomy specimens.

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  • 1Department of Urology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL, USA.



To evaluate the presence of spermatogenesis in orchiectomy specimens of patients with testicular cancer to determine possible predictors of success with oncologic testicular sperm extraction of the cancerous testis at orchiectomy.


We retrospectively reviewed the pathology reports and slides from 83 men who underwent radical orchiectomy for testicular cancer at 2 institutions from 1999 to 2010. The presence or absence of spermatogenesis in each specimen was determined. Data on tumor histopathologic type, serum tumor markers, and tumor size were also obtained and analyzed to detect any associations with the presence of spermatogenesis.


The 83 specimens included 41 pure seminomas, 36 nonseminomatous and mixed germ cell tumors, and 6 benign lesions. Overall, spermatogenesis was detected in 48 of 77 (62%) cancerous specimens. Spermatogenesis was present in 22 of 41 (54%) pure seminomas and 26 of 36 (72%) nonseminomatous and mixed germ cell tumors, with no significant difference found between the 2 subtypes (P = .11). No association was found between tumor marker levels and the presence of spermatogenesis. A logistic regression model revealed a statistically significant inverse relationship between tumor size and spermatogenesis presence (P = .004).


At orchiectomy, most cancerous testes contained active spermatogenesis and, thus, represent a viable source for sperm cryopreservation with oncologic testicular sperm extraction. A small tumor size proved to be a positive prognostic indicator for the presence of spermatogenesis, although a larger tumor size did not preclude the presence of spermatogenesis.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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