Donor Testing

July 25, 2011

Blog written by Director of Operations Fairfax Cryobank Michelle Ottey, PhD

Choosing a sperm donor is a complex process that takes a lot into consideration. What most people do not realize is that you will know more information about your sperm donor than you’d ever know about your partner or a friend.

Ten tests your donor has had that your other male friends probably have not:

1. Sperm Count

2. Analysis of how his sperm freezes and thaws

3. Analysis of the shape of the sperm cells

4. BMI (body mass index) – how many of your male friends even know what they weigh?

5. Chromosome analysis -looking at the 23 chromosome pairs

6. Cystic Fibrosis Carrier Testing

7. Spinal Muscular Atrophy Carrier testing

8. Semen testing for HPV (Human Papillomavirus) which can cause cervical cancer

9. Semen testing for Herpes

10. Blood tests for STDs every 3 months

When a prospective donor learns about all of the testing donors undergo, they are often shocked. Most guys, when applying to be donors do not realize the extent of the rigorous screening process. There is a misconception, perpetuated by silly television shows that you just walk in, fill out a form, and “leave your deposit.” Not so! The screening process can take 6-8 weeks and the majority of men do not make it through to become donors.

Many of the donors appreciate the free, quality healthcare. They are having regular testing and physical screening which confirms their good health. Let’s face it; the majority of guys would not go to the doctor unless they were bit by a rabid dog and some not even then.

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