By 1992, Belgian Gianpiero Palermo had produced another tool—intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)—to retrieve single sperm that could be injected into a woman's egg to produce an embryo (in-vitro fertilization). This procedure, and subsequently developed techniques, allowed recovery from the epididymides and even the testes—sperm reservoirs previously deemed unlikely sources of viable sperm from men once thought to be untreatable.
Despite such progress, however, scientists are still exploring many areas, particularly the role of genetics, in male infertility. Findings could result in gene therapy to manipulate sperm in an effort to increase their health and function.
In any case, expect the imprint of urologists on those new techniques that give men a biological chance at fatherhood.