Sperm Cryobanking

Sperm cryopreservation is a process in which a man's semen is frozen for future use. A sperm cryobank is a medical facility that collects stores and freezes the sperm.

Ideal candidates for Sperm Cryobanking

Sperm banking is used in different situations. Normally, men choose cryobanks to preserve their sperm if they are about to undergo surgical treatments or medications that may affect their sperm production.

Cryobankingis an ideal choice for those undergoing:

  • Procedures to treatcancer such as radiation and chemotherapy that may impair sperm production or quality
  • Having a medical condition which is beginning to affect your ability to ejaculate
  • Undergoing a vasectomy procedure
  • Intake of medicines that may impair the sperm production or quality
  • Any surgical procedure that could affect organs like the testes, prostate, or the ability to ejaculate

Sperm Cryobanking Process

A lab representative will meet you and review your case history and medical backgroundbefore asking youto fill out relevant paperwork. Most labs recommend an initial test freeze of the sperm before banking the sperm.The specimen can be produced either at home or at the lab. On an average, mennormally bank three samples since the quality of the sperm often requiresthe usage of more than one vial of sperm to achieve pregnancy. The sperm is collected and frozen in the bank as long as you intend to store it.

How is the sperm actually frozen?

Gradual freezing of the sperm at a temperature of -196 F ensures thatthe least number of sperms are destroyed. The procedure followed is as follows:

  • A comprehensive semen analysis is done on the first specimen in order determine the sperm quantity and quality.
  • Each subsequent specimen is checked before freezing to give you an accurate count of motile sperms.
  • Once the analysis of the sample is done, it is transferred into different vials for freezing. A cryoprotectant is added to it to bring about the freezing process.
  • The vials are gradually frozen in liquid nitrogen vapor before being transferred for freezing into liquid nitrogen tanks for storage.
  • After 48 hours from the time of the initial freezing, an initial test sample is again tested to check ifthe sperm from each specimen survived the freezing. The results will be sent to you once the banking procedure is complete.

Advantages of Sperm Cryobanking

Sperm cryobanking is generally considered in the following circumstances:

  • Pre-cancer Treatment (i.e. chemotherapy, radiation, surgery)
  • Pre-vasectomy Procedure
  • Advanced Paternal Age
  • Before resorting to Assisted Reproductive Techniques
  • High-risk Occupations (e.g. Military, Firemen, Policemen, Athletes)