Sperm Collection by Electroejaculation (EEJ)

This information will help you prepare for your sperm collection by electroejaculation (EEJ) at Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK).

EEJ is a procedure to collect semen to examine and potentially freeze or store sperm. It’s for men who aren’t able to collect sperm by masturbating to ejaculation. During the procedure, a mild electric current is used to cause an ejaculation under anesthesia (medication to make you sleep).

After your procedure, your semen will be brought to the Sperm Bank of New York, where it will be analyzed. After it’s analyzed, it will be transferred to their affiliated New Jersey sperm bank for freezing and storage. The address of the sperm bank:

The Sperm and Embryo Bank of New Jersey
187 Mill Lane
Mountainside, NJ 07092

908-654-8836

Some sperm banks may offer less expensive storage fees. Speak with your healthcare provider if you’re interested in having your sperm moved to a different sperm bank or if you have any other questions.

Before Your Procedure

Ask about your medications

You may need to stop taking some of your medications before your procedure. Talk with your doctor about which medications are safe for you to stop taking.

 

Arrange for someone to take you home

You must have someone 18 years or older take you home after your procedure. If you don’t have someone to do this, call one of the agencies below. They will send someone to go home with you. There’s usually a charge for this service, and you will need to provide transportation.

Agencies in New York                                         Agencies in New Jersey
Partners in Care: 888-735-8913                                         Caring People: 877-227-4649
Caring People: 877-227-4649                                          

 

Tell us if you’re sick

If you develop any illness (fever, cold, sore throat, or flu) before your procedure, call the doctor who scheduled it for you. After 5:00 pm, during the weekend, and on holidays, call 212-639-2000 and ask for the doctor on call for your doctor.

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The Day Before Your Procedure

Note the time of your appointment

A clerk from the Admitting Office will call you after 2:00 pm the day before your procedure. If you’re scheduled for your procedure on a Monday, you will be called on the Friday before.

The clerk will tell you what time you should arrive for your procedure. They will also tell you where to go. If you don’t receive a call by 7:00 pm, call 212-639-5014.

If you need to cancel your procedure for any reason, call the doctor who scheduled it for you.

Instructions for eating and drinking before your surgery

12 ounces of water
  • Do not eat anything after midnight the night before your surgery. This includes hard candy and gum.
  • Between midnight and up until 2 hours before your scheduled arrival time, you may drink a total of 12 ounces of water (see figure).
  • Starting 2 hours before your scheduled arrival time, do not eat or drink anything. This includes water.
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The Day of Your Procedure

Things to remember

  • Take your medications the morning of your procedure as instructed by your doctor. Take them with a few sips of water.
  • Don’t put on any lotions, creams, powders, deodorant, makeup, or cologne.
  • Remove any jewelry, including body piercings.
  • Leave all valuables, such as credit cards and jewelry, at home.
  • If you wear contact lenses, if possible, wear your glasses instead. If you don’t have glasses, bring a case for your contacts.

What to bring with you

  • A list of the medications you take at home, including patches and creams.
  • Medications for breathing problems (such as inhalers), medications for chest pain, or both.
  • A case for your glasses or contacts.
  • Your Health Care Proxy form, if you have completed one.
 

What to expect

Once you arrive at the hospital, doctors, nurses, and other staff members will ask you to state and spell your name and date of birth many times. This is for your safety. People with the same or similar names may be having procedures on the same day.

You will receive general anesthesia (medication to make you sleepy) to put you to sleep during the procedure. A catheter (thin, flexible tube) will be placed in your bladder to drain out your urine. A solution will be put into your bladder through the catheter to lower your acid level. This protects any sperm that may pass into your bladder when you ejaculate.

While you’re asleep, your doctor will place a probe into your rectum. A mild electrical current will be sent through the probe. This is repeated every few seconds and slowly increased until you ejaculate.

Your semen will be collected. This includes the semen from your penis and any that may have passed into your bladder. The semen will be analyzed under a microscope. If no sperm are found or if the sperm don’t move well, another procedure called testicular sperm extraction (TESE) may be performed. This involves collecting the sperm directly from the testes. This will only be done if you consented to it before your procedure.

Once the semen has been collected, the probe and catheter will be removed.

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After Your Procedure

In the recovery room

You will recover in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU). When you wake up, you will be discharged home or brought back to your hospital room, if you’re in the hospital for other reasons.

At home

  • If you’re having pain, you can take medications such as ibuprofen (Advil®) or acetaminophen (Tylenol®).
  • You may have mild discomfort and burning with urination for 3 days after your procedure. If this lasts longer than 3 days or gets worse, you may have a urinary tract infection (UTI). To prevent this:
    • You will be given a prescription for antibiotics. Take them for 3 days after your procedure. Take all the medication that is prescribed.
    • Drink extra liquids for 3 days after your procedure. Drink enough so that your urine is almost clear.
  • You will receive your results within 3 days of your procedure. If you haven’t received your results after 3 days, call your doctor.
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Call Your Doctor or Nurse if You Have:

  • A temperature of 101°F (38.3°C) or higher
  • Burning with urination that lasts longer than 3 days or gets worse
  • Frequent or urgent urination
  • Trouble urinating
  • Blood in your urine
  • Blood coming from your rectum
  • Chills
  • Pain that isn’t relieved with ibuprofen or acetaminophen
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