Objective: To compare the clinical characteristics and reproductive outcomes of nonobstructive azoospermic men with uniform early and late maturation arrest. Methods: Patients with biopsy-documented uniform maturation arrest undergoing testicular sperm retrieval and complete medical records were enrolled in the present study. Their medical history, physical examination findings, testicular volume, serum hormone parameters, genetic anomalies, sperm retrieval, and reproductive outcomes were retrospectively analyzed. Results: In a cohort of 223 nonobstructive azoospermic men, 34 men with uniform maturation arrest (21 early maturation arrest and 13 late maturation arrest) were identified. No significant differences were seen in the age distribution, testicular volume, or hormone parameters between patients with early and late maturation arrest. Only 13 patients (38.2%) had a normal serum follicle-stimulating hormone level and normal testicular volume. Patients with early maturation arrest had a greater frequency of overall genetic anomalies, and patients with late maturation arrest had a greater frequency of previous testicular insults. The sperm retrieval and impregnation rate were nonsignificantly greater in patients with late maturation arrest. Conclusion: Maturation arrest has a variety of causes and presents with diverse phenotypes. Not all patients with uniform maturation arrest have a normal follicle-stimulating hormone level or testicular volume. Patients with early maturation arrest have a greater incidence of genetic anomalies and are more likely to have worse reproductive outcomes than are patients with late maturation arrest.
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