Fertility Centre Confirms First Irish Pregnancy Using New Technique 4 years ago

Fertility Centre Confirms First Irish Pregnancy Using New Technique

An Irish fertility centre has announced the country's first reported pregnancy as a result of an advanced sperm retrieval technique. 

Cork Fertility Centre told HerFamily.ie that the procedure, Microsurgical Testicular Sperm Extraction (Micro-TESE) was carried out on a patient from Cork in conjunction with the centre’s scientific team, before the man and his partner underwent IVF treatment.

The patient previously had testicular surgery which affected his sperm production.

The development offers new hope to men struggling with sperm-related fertility issues, offering affected couples an opportunity to have children, without using donor semen.

Cork Fertility Centre’s Consultant Urologist and Andrologist, Dr Ivor Cullen, who performed the procedure at his practice in University Hospital Waterford said


“This is a landmark pregnancy and very positive news regarding the treatment of male infertility and in particular azoospermia. Azoospermia is a condition where no sperm cells are found in a semen sample, perhaps as a result of a hormone imbalance or other medical problem. It offers renewed hope to these men, and to men who have been diagnosed with defective sperm production, or had previous unsuccessful conventional sperm retrieval procedures.”

Dr Cullen is one of only a few urologists in Ireland qualified to carry out this highly specialised surgery, which involves carrying out targeted dissection of tiny tubes within the testicle, which are more likely to contain sperm. A high powered microscope is used during the procedure to distinguish between healthy and unhealthy tissue. The healthy tissue samples are then examined in the laboratory. If viable sperm is found, it is prepared and frozen for use in a subsequent IVF cycle.