Fertility Preservation Program
Resources for patients and families
Options for males
Depending on the treatment received, some boys will have a high chance of recovery of testicular function. A good option for these boys may simply be to allow enough time for sperm production to restart. When these boys become men, if they have issues with fertility due to inadequate sperm production, specialists in male infertility and reproductive endocrinology will be available to assist them.
Sperm banking is offered to all eligible male patients who have demonstrated pubertal changes (typically 13 years old or more). Adolescents who are capable of producing a semen sample by self-stimulation can have the sample preserved for future use. This is recommended for boys that are going to receive therapy that has a chance of causing permanent damage to sperm production.
Testicular sperm extraction and banking:
All eligible male patients who have undergone puberty but are unable to produce a semen sample may also preserve sperm. A surgical biopsy of the testicle can be performed to obtain a sample of tissue from which sperm are produced. The sperm can then be extracted for preservation.
Testicular tissue banking:
Boys that have not entered puberty do not produce sperm. But, their testicles contain cells that are essential for sperm production later on. These testicular stem cells can be affected by some therapies. Testicular tissue freezing is a preservation option that can be performed before puberty, but it is experimental. In this procedure, small pieces of testicular tissue are surgically removed before cancer treatment and frozen for future use.