Overweight men with nonobstructive azoospermia have worse pregnancy outcomes after microdissection testicular sperm extraction

Fertil Steril. 2013 Feb;99(2):372-6. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2012.10.025. Epub 2012 Oct 31.


Objective: To evaluate the effect of obesity on the outcome of testicular sperm extraction (TESE) and assisted reproductive technology.

Design: Clinical retrospective study.

Setting: Center for reproductive medicine at a tertiary-care university hospital.

Patient(s): Nine hundred seventy patients with nonobstructive azoospermia.

Intervention(s): Microdissection TESE followed by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).

Main outcome measure(s): Sperm retrieval rate and clinical pregnancy rate.

Result(s): Testicular sperm were successfully retrieved in 55% of men overall. Of those with sperm found, clinical pregnancy rate was 51% and live birth rate 40%. Sperm retrieval rates were similar in men with body mass index (BMI) <25 kg/m(2), 25-30 kg/m(2), and >30 kg/m(2) (59%, 57%, and 54%, respectively). Mean BMI of men who contributed to pregnancy (27.3 ± 4.9 kg/m(2)) was lower than for men whose sperm did not contribute to a pregnancy (28.2 ± 5.4 kg/m(2)). No man with BMI >43 kg/m(2) (n = 11) contributed to a successful pregnancy, even though sperm were found in men with BMI up to 57 kg/m(2). On multivariable logistic regression analysis, male BMI was the only predictor of successful pregnancy among the variables analyzed, including male age, female age, and female BMI.

Conclusion(s): Overweight men have lower clinical pregnancy rate after microdissection TESE and ICSI compared with men with normal BMI. Men with BMI >43 kg/m(2) did not contribute to any pregnancies, despite successful sperm retrieval.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Azoospermia / epidemiology*
  • Azoospermia / therapy*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microdissection / statistics & numerical data
  • New York
  • Overweight / epidemiology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Outcome / epidemiology*
  • Pregnancy Rate*
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Sperm Retrieval / statistics & numerical data*

Supplementary concepts

  • Azoospermia, Nonobstructive