Sperm banking is the name for the collection and storage of semen that a cancer patient can give prior to treatment. Semen is the fluid that contains sperm. Sperm banking is also known as sperm cryopreservation or semen storage.
Testicular Tissue Cryopreservation
Testicular Tissue Cryopreservation. Testicular tissue cryopreservation is an option for prepubertal patients who are not producing sperm and therefore are unable to preserve a semen sample.
Egg retrieval is the process of removing eggs from the ovaries. Prior to the egg retrieval, fertility drugs are taken to stimulate the development of multiple eggs. This is performed by passing a hollow needle through the wall of the vagina into the ovary. The needle is guided into the ovary with the use of a vaginal ultrasound probe. The needle can be guided into the follicle where the egg resides. The egg itself is not visible with the ultrasound. The fluid is aspirated from the follicle and deposited into a test tube. The fluid aspirate from the test tube is then inspected under the microscope to find the egg.
Egg or Embryo Freezing
Egg and embryo freezing are procedures in which mature eggs are removed from your ovary to be frozen and stored for possible use in the future. They can be frozen as unfertilized eggs or fertilized with sperm and frozen as embryos. These procedures are performed by specially trained gynecologists, called reproductive endocrinologists (RE).
Ovarian Tissue Freezing
Ovarian tissue freezing is an experimental procedure in which an entire ovary, or pieces of an ovary, are removed during a surgery. The ovarian tissue is brought to a special laboratory to be processed. The outer layer of the ovary, which holds the eggs, will be removed, cut into small pieces, and frozen. A small amount of the tissue will be used for research to find the best way to help women have children using ovarian tissue. The rest of the tissue will be stored for your personal use.
Ovarian suppression involves taking monthly injections of a medication called leuprolide to block hormones that stimulate your ovaries. This prevents eggs from maturing, with the hope that this will protect them from the effects of chemotherapy.
Ovarian transposition may be an option if you are receiving radiation therapy to the pelvis. This is an outpatient surgical procedure that moves your ovaries out of the field of treatment. This will lower the amount of radiation your ovaries are exposed to during your treatment and may help your ovaries keep working properly after treatment.