Send to

Choose Destination
Hum Reprod. 2007 Feb;22(2):594-7. Epub 2006 Sep 25.

Parental desire and acceptability of spermatogonial stem cell cryopreservation in boys with cancer.

Author information

Department of Paediatric Oncology, Emma Children Hospital, Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



In the near future, a substantial proportion of adults will be childhood cancer survivors. The cryopreservation and transplantation of spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) is currently successful in animals; application in humans seems likely in the near future. Cryopreserving SSCs might become an important issue in childhood cancer. Because this might require testicular biopsies or hemicastration, parental desire/acceptability for SSC collection was enquired for.


Three hundred eighteen parents of boys surviving at least 2 years after the diagnosis of cancer were asked about collecting SSCs by biopsy or hemicastration and collecting sperm by masturbation or electrostimulation. Opinions were assessed as if at the time of diagnosis and at the present time.


Sixty-three per cent of parents responded. At diagnosis, SSC collection by means of biopsy was approved by 61%, hemicastration by 33% and collecting sperm by 70% (P < 0.013). The acceptability of performing hemicastration was significantly lower than all other forms of SSC/sperm collection. No differences were observed between parents' present opinion and opinion at diagnosis. No differences related to treatment intensity, presumed negative fertility effects and pubertal state were found.


Infertility is a major topic for parents. For prepubertal boys, the collection of SSCs might be a great relief in respect of the fertility issue. Collecting SSCs by biopsy is desired and accepted by the majority of parents; hemicastration is accepted by one-third of parents. The translation of SSC cryopreservation and transplantation from animal models to humans is eagerly awaited.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center