Sperm donation is a method in which a man donates sperm via semen, the fluid released during ejaculation to help infertile couples and individuals to become parents of healthy baby. Donor sperm can be used either for intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization.
Donor sperm is often used by:
- A couple experiencing male infertility (little or no sperm, produces unhealthy sperm, male suffering from some genetic disease and vasectomy)
- A single woman who want to be mother.
Donor sperm may be obtained at a sperm bank or fertility clinic. Sperm banks or clinics may be subjected to state or professional regulations, including restrictions on donor anonymity and the number of offspring that may be produced, and there may be other legal protections of the rights and responsibilities of both recipient and donor. Some sperm banks, either by choice or regulation, limit the amount of information available to potential recipients.A desire to obtain more information on donors, is one reason why recipients may choose to use a known donor or private donation. However, conception is achieved, the nature and course of the pregnancy will be the same as one achieved by sexual intercourse, and the male donor will be the biological father of any child born from his donations.
Before starting the infertility treatment, infertility experts evaluate ethical, legal, mental and emotional aspects of utilizing donor sperm.They also help to make couples mentally and emotionally strong enough to hassles free fertility treatment.
Indian Council and Medical Research directs the following requirements to become sperm donor:
- Donor age must not be below 21 or above 45 years.
- Donor blood group and Rh status must be determined and placed on record.
- Donor must be free from HIV, Hepatitis B/C, Infections, Hypertension, Diabetes, STD and common genetic disorders such as Thalassemia.
- Donor semen analysis of the individual must be carried out using a semen analyzer according to WHO method.
- Other relevant information of the donor, such as height, weight, age, educational qualifications, profession, color of the skin and the eyes, record to major diseases including any psychiatric disorder and the family background in respect of history of any familial disorder, must be recorded in an appropriate Performa.
Apart from sperm donor guidelines, ICMR also recommends other screening guidelines for sperm donation (PDF):
- To keep all information about sperm donors, recipients and couples confidential and secure.
- Use of sperm donated by relative or a known friend of either the wife or the husband shall not be permitted.
- It will be the responsibility of the clinic to obtain sperm from appropriate bank.
Sperm should be donated only in government authorized sperm bank. After sperm donation and screening process sperm either frozen in liquid nitrogen for future use in bank till 180 days or used by infertility clinics for treatment.
Higher success rate getting pregnant by donor sperm reported in women, who have no infertility problems, are under 35 years old. Lower success rates are reported where there is a female factor (ovulation problem, endometriosis, DES, etc.) or the women is over 35.