Couples use sperm donation (SD) when the husband/partner has no sperm or low semen analysis (azoospermia, oligospermia, low mobility), or when there is a genetic problem that could be inherited to the child.
Free women who want a biological child can also choose the method of sperm donation (SD).
The couple or the woman who wish to proceed with this method must be psychologically ready. Dr. Giakoumakis recommends that anyone who wants this should visit a mental health counselor. 'It is essential', as he says, 'to feel comfortable with their decision, and that all their fears and questions are openly discussed. For some, it can mean the different ethical issues, while for others, if they have to tell the child that it was conceived with a sperm donor.'
Anonymous Sperm Donor
Patients using sperm from an anonymous donor acquire their frozen sample from approved cryopreservation banks. The Mediterranean Fertility Institute is not an owner but does not even maintain a sperm bank.
However, we are at your disposal, if you wish, to help you find the right donor from the cryopreservation clinics we cooperate with. You should always remember that donor selection is a purely personal choice and you need to have the peace and time you need. The individual patient is responsible for paying the bank for the genetic material and for its transportation to our clinic.
Sperm cryopreservation banks may offer a range of donor information such as:
- Educational level
- Professional level
- Medical history and health level
Most banks have prepared lists of all the donor data, while some banks also provide donor photos. Also cryopreservation banks provide certification for good sperm quality as well as a minimum number of semen mobility per vial. Patients should be careful and aware of these prices as they are crucial to the decision they are asked to take.
All donors must have undergone specialized screening to detect the presence of infection such as syphilis, hepatitis B, cytomegalovirus (CMV), mucous membranes, chlamides, streptococcus, trimmeloma. Also, donor sperm should be tested for the possible presence of white blood cells indicating potential infection within the reproductive system.
All these microorganisms can be transmitted from the sperm of the male to the female organism. Some of them can cause serious harm to the fetus and others only to the woman.
The sample is then frozen and kept in the cryopreservation bank for six (6) months. The donor is again subjected to examination for communicable diseases before the sperm sample is delivered to clinics and patients.
Finally, we suggest that the donor's blood coincides with that of the future father, to avoid possible social misunderstandings (if the child does not know about it, blood group identification at school, etc.) or any future need for blood transfusion by the parents.
Reserving Donor Sperm
If an IVF attempt fails or even if you want to make a second child, you have to keep in mind that there is a chance that you cannot find the same sperm sample.
When you choose your donor, ensure that the sperm you receive will not be exhausted until you get pregnant. Recent studies show that on average pregnancy is achieved after 2-3 cycles of treatment. Therefore, it is recommended that sufficient amounts be reserved before starting your treatment.
After giving birth to your first child, you might want to have other children in the future. In most cases this is not possible because the sperm will have been exhausted by then. So it's important to understand that you should make sure your children are also genetic brothers. Another benefit is that you will have an increased likelihood that your children will have similar characteristics to each other.
To avoid situations such as those mentioned above, we suggest that you reserve sperm on your first order or even better when you have achieved your first pregnancy. Clearly, our experienced laboratory team can guide you and help you understand all the issues regarding quality, quantity and sperm storage.
Sperm Donation and Insemination
The majority of patients who use sperm start their efforts with the method of insemination. In most cases, doctors in our center choose to administer fertility drugs with clomiphene or gonadotropins in order to induce ovulation in women who do not physically or to increase egg production to multiply the chances of fertilization.
All inseminations are done in our center (and not with insemination boxes in your home), as the chances of conception are greater. This is due to the fact that the sperm sample is placed closer and closer to the ovum (s), while at the same time controlling the sperm is improved by processing the sample in the laboratory.
Sperm Donation and IVF
If some insemination attempts are done without successful pregnancy or if additional infertility factors have been identified, the next step is IVF with a sperm donor.
When a frozen sample of sperm is thawed, our embryologists perform a sample analysis in our center's laboratory. If sperm concentration and / or mobility is low, the embryologist may suggest thawing another vial to achieve better fertilization rates.
There is still a chance for the patient to be asked to try to boost the ICSI, ie placement of the sperm directly into the egg for fertilization.