Sperm donation is a way of resolving male infertility if the male partner does not wish to undergo procedures such as PESA or TESA or his testes have been surgically removed or damaged by radiotherapy or chemotherapy for cancer. Some men may also not wish to use their own semen for genetic reasons. Sperm donation can also be used by single women and lesbian couples wishing to conceive.
Spire Fertility offers donor sperm to couples and individuals from our sperm bank
Unlike most reproductive technologies, sperm donation is an old form of treatment dating back 100 of years. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) regulates the use of donor sperm in the UK.
Spire Fertility actively recruits our own sperm donors for our sperm bank. Sperm donors are carefully screened for infectious disease, including HIV 1 and 2, HTLV-1, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, CMV, Syphilis, Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea. Donors have their chromosomes analysed and a full medical consultation as well as counselling.
What is involved in using donor sperm from Spire Fertility?
Prospective parents can choose the appropriate physical characteristics from the panel of donors so that skin colour, height, eye and hair colour can be matched.
HFEA regulations are such that donors are not allowed to father children for more than 10 families. This means that the chance of a boy and girl from different families, both fathered by the same donor meeting, marrying and having children is extraordinarily small. Parents may use the same donor to provide a brother or sister following a successful pregnancy.
Owing to a change in the law in 2005, all donors must now be identifiable to a resulting child when the child reaches 18 years of age, if the child makes a request to the HFEA for the identity of a donor.
Donated sperm may be used in an Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) cycle if there are no problems on the female side and if the Fallopian tubes are open and intact. However, donated sperm may also be used as part of an IVF or GIFT cycle.
Ideally sperm donors should have fathered their own children and they must have good quality sperm. However there can be no guarantee of fertility and on rare occasions the thawed sperm sample is suboptimal in quality. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) is used to assist fertilisation if the donated sperm is being used in an IVF cycle.
Patients wishing to be considered for sperm donation are encouraged to read the HFEA leaflet, 'Sperm and Egg Donors and the Law'.
If you successfully conceive using donor sperm, you should contact your embryologists to inform them and reserve the same donor sperm for future treatment for a sibling.