There may be hope, yet, for men (and boys) treated for cancer at an early age. Many of them find later in life that having children is next to impossible without adoption or a sperm donor. But researchers at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and Weill Cornell Medical Center have long been working on a technique that will allow them to use the man's own sperm to impregnate his partner.
Surgeons perform biopsies of the testicles, searching for tubes that aren't flat that might contain sperm. If the tubes do contain sperm, they extract it, and then perform an in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure. Out of 73 test subjects, 27 still had sperm in their testicles. Of those 27, 15 became fathers via IVF, including five who now have twins.
“Chances of successful treatment before were thought to be zero. So yes, we're far better than zero but certainly it's not absolute that if you go in for treatment, that you're going to be successful,” Dr. Peter Schlegel, urology chairman at NY-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell.