Sperm Bank
Banking Your Sperm For Future Use

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sperm banking procedure

Sperm Banking

Contents

What Is A Sperm Bank?
Sperm Banking Before Vasectomy
Sperm Banking Before Cancer Treatments
Sperm Banking For Military Families
How Long Can Sperm Be Stored?
How Much Does Sperm Banking Cost?
How Do I Locate A Sperm Bank?




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Assisted Reproductive Technology
Other names: Semen banks, tissue banks and sperm cryopreservation. Cryopreservation is a techie term for freezing.

What Is A Sperm Bank?

A sperm bank is a laboratory that freezes and stores human sperm. Sperm banks store sperm samples both from sperm donors and men who wish to preserve their fertility. Sperm donors receive a fee for their deposits and those deposits are screened and sold onto infertile couples or single people who wish to become pregnant. Other types of donors are men who wish to preserve their fertility before a medical treatment such as cancer therapy or vasectomy. These donors pay the sperm bank an annual storage fee. In America, sperm banks are regulated by the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB). Sperm banking has been around for decades, the longest established bank is Cryogenic Laboratories.

Related Articles
Sperm donor: How to become a donor, requirements and what you can earn.
Sperm donation: How to buy donor sperm to become pregnant.

Sperm Banking Before Vasectomy

While vasectomy is still considered a long-term method of birth control for men, some men change their mind after the procedure and want more children. So what are their options?

1. They could have a vasectomy reversal operation. This surgery takes 6 to 8 hours, is painful and expensive.
2. They could opt for sperm aspiration - extracting sperm for IVF. This is a minor procedure which is less invasive and cheaper than vasectomy reversal but is still more invasive and expensive than sperm banking.
3.They could freeze some sperm in a sperm bank BEFORE their operation. This sperm can later be used to impregnate a partner in combination with fertility treatments.

The process of sperm banking before a vasectomy is simple. A few days before your operation you visit a sperm bank and provide a sample of semen. You can provide one sample or provide a larger sample over several visits. You will need to refrain from sexual activity for 5 days before providing your sample. Once the sample has been provided you will have a blood test to screen for infectious diseases. Your sample(s) is then divided into separate vials for freezing and storing.

Sperm Banking Before Cancer Treatments

Although Lance Armstrong is no longer the darling of the media he once was, there is one thing he got right. When he was diagnosed with cancer he immediately went to a sperm bank and made several sperm deposits. By freezing his semen he was able to have children later with the help of fertility treatments. Cancer treatments like radiation therapy and chemotherapy are toxic to sperm production and carry the risk of temporary and permanent male infertility. It is not possible to predict who will be left temporarily infertile and who will be left permanently sterile. In addition, certain types of cancers can interfere with sperm production (technically known as spermatogenesis). These include testicular cancer, prostate cancer, lymphoma and Hodgkin’s, leukemia and any childhood cancer that requires cancer treatment before puberty. Studies show that cancer and cancer treatments can affect sperm production for at least 2 years after treatment and can also lead to miscarriage, stillbirth and birth defects.

Sperm Banking For Military Families

Most sperm banks offer a reduced rate for military personnel before they are deployed. This helps preserve the fertility of soldiers who are risk of possible injuries to the groin or reproductive organs; as well as infertility due to exposure to hazardous chemicals and extreme heat. It also offers the possibility of pregnancy with their partner through artificial insemination, IVF or other fertility treatment techniques if they are away for extended periods of service.

How Long Can Frozen Sperm Be Stored?

Sperm can be frozen for many years; successful pregnancies have been achieved from sperm which was frozen for 20 years.

How Much Does Sperm Banking Cost?

Average costs broke down as follows:

Initial consultation, donation and freezing costs: $250
Initial blood test: $250
Subsequent sperm donations and freezing: $250
Storage per year: $375

Other Procedures Offered By Sperm Banks

Embryo Freezing: Embryos produced by IVF are frozen until needed. Unneeded embryos may be donated to an embryo donation program.
Egg Freezing: Women can preserve their fertility and delay childbearing by having their eggs frozen.

How Do I Locate A Sperm Bank?

The National Sperm Bank Directory has a list of sperm banks that specialize in the collection and storage of sperm.
Website: spermbankdirectory.com

Sperm Banks In America

The following are just a few of the sperm banking facilities in the U.S.:

Sperm Bank California
San Diego County
6699 Alvarado Road
Suite 2208
San Diego, California 92120
And
Orange County
12791 Newport Ave.,
Suite 206
Tustin, California 92780
Phone: (888) 951-CRYO or (619) 265-0102
Website: spermbankcalifornia.com
Offers: This facility has developed a home sperm freezing kit which allows men to create a sperm sample for freezing in the comfort of their homes. For those seeking donations, you will find a sperm donor of the month profile as well as an extensive sperm donor database.

Cryogenic Laboratories, Inc

1944 Lexington Avenue North
Roseville, Minnesota 55113
Corporate Headquarters
3015 Williams Drive Suite 110
Fairfax, Virginia 22031
Client Services
Phone: 800.466.2796 or 651.489.8000
Website: cryolab.com
Offers: Cryogenic Laboratories is one of the few sperm banks fully accredited by the AATB. They also offer a home sperm freezing kit. For those seeking a donor, they have an easy to search database of potential donors with photos. Some sperm banks require you to pay to receive donor information, Cryogenics list is free to download. Audio clips, childhood photos and medical personal profiles of donors are also all free.

  Related Articles on ART Procedures

For more ART techniques, see the following:

ICSI procedure: Sometimes used to improve fertilization rates.
Donor cytoplasm: Freshening up your eggs!
PDG testing: Testing embryos for genetic defects.

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