Reciprocal translocations, the most frequent structural aberration in humans, are mainly transmitted by one of the parents. In order to analyze the chromosomal content of the spermatozoa from carriers of chromosomal reorganizations, two methods have been used, karyotyping of sperm chromosomes by the human-hamster system and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) in decondensed sperm nuclei. In this work, we review 92 sperm chromosome segregation studies from 85 different reciprocal translocation carriers, including a triple translocation carrier. Using the human-hamster method, a total of 5,818 spermatozoa from 44 reciprocal translocation carriers have been analyzed, 43 of them carrying a single reciprocal translocation and one was a carrier of a double reciprocal translocation. A segregation analysis in a carrier of a t(2;22;11) has been also reported. Carrying out FISH in sperm nuclei, a total of 237,042 spermatozoa from 46 reciprocal translocation carriers have been analyzed. Six of these were also analyzed by the human-hamster system. Taking into account both methods, a total of 76 different reciprocal translocations have been studied. In 74 of these 76 translocations, the reorganization occurs between autosomes, and in the other two, the Y chromosome is involved. Although along general lines, there are similarities between the results obtained by the two methods of analysis, variations are observed when the distribution of the different types of segregations that produce imbalances is compared. As a general rule reciprocal translocation carriers produce more unbalanced sperm than normal or balanced sperm. The results reported also corroborate that the proportion of unbalanced forms depends on the characteristics of the reorganization and that it varies widely. Thus the importance of performing a detailed meiotic behavior analysis for each particular translocation in order to obtain enough information to give adequate genetic counseling is stressed. Aspects as to the possible overestimation of 3:1 segregations or the presence of interchromosomal effects still need to be elucidated. Copyright © 2005 S. Karger AG.