There is a shortage of sperm donors. Why should men donate gametes?

Articles, News 25. January, 2019

It is necessary to use donated sperm cells for 3-5 % of couples that are treated for infertility. There is not a lot of donors despite the fact that the retrieval of male sex cells is, on the contrary of female sex cells retrieval that is accompanied by hormonal stimulation, basically easy. The donated sperm cells can save the situation and enable the couples fighting problems with conception to start a family. Who can become a donor and how does the process go?

There are health issues that cause the need of donated sperm cells; it is for example the case when the sperm cells in ejaculate are not alive or not created at all. In other cases, the male gametes are present but do not fertilize: that means they are not capable of fertilization of the oocyte. In these specific cases it is not possible to help the couple not even when using the method of preimplantation genetic diagnosis and thus, it is necessary to use anonymous donation for the artificial fertilization.

Who can donate gametes and how?

In the Czech Republic, it is possible to donate semen when 18 to 35 years old. Besides the age, it is necessary to meet other conditions. “If the man decides to donate semen in our clinic, he cannot be more than 35 years old and he needs to be in a good health condition. Necessary is also the absence of hereditary and psychological diseases in the family, he cannot smoke nor to be drug addicted. Another requirement is to have complete secondary education,” clarifies MUDr. Kateřina Veselá, PhD. In the Czech Republic, sperm donation is, as egg donation, anonymous and the infertile couple will know about the donor only general information like hair and eye color, height, weight, blood group, traits of character, interests or education level.

If the man decides to become a donor he needs to undergo medical entrance examination. Based on the results it is decided whether he can donate semen or not. “Sperm analysis is a basic examination. If the parameters meet the requirements the man is invited to a consultation with clinic geneticist and he undergoes taking of blood samples for blood group examination, genetic testing and testing for sexual transmitted diseases. Another control of sexual transmitted diseases is performed 6 months after the first sperm donation,” explains MUDr. Kateřina Veselá, PhD. If all the tests are alright, the man can donate the sperm repeatedly, ideally 10 times. A compensation of 2000,- Kč (78 €) for one sperm retrieval is associated with the donation.