Protocol for Post-Morten Sperm Retrieval
The Urologist's Perspective
March 17, 1999 was the first time a baby was born conceived from sperm retireved post-mortem. The man was deceased for 30 hours prior to retrieval and the sperm was frozen for five years.
The recommended procedure for sperm retrieval in the post-mortem state is:
- Absolutely sterile conditions
- After shaving and prepping the genital area, a 3-4 cm incision is made in the scrotum, through the tunica vaginalis and the testicle is delivered (the procedure should be done bilaterally)
- Resect the testicle and epididymis bilaterally
- The specimen should be placed in a sterile specimen container in a solution of Ham's (if unavailable, normal saline or Ringer's lactate may suffice)
- The tissue should be kept cool (not cold - approximately 50 - 60 degrees) and transferred to a sperm bank or ART laboratory that has experience and facilities to extract and freeze viable sperm
Time is important and the sooner the better, but on one occasion a period of approximately 40 hours between death and cryopreservation demonstrated motile sperm.