Semen Freezing Technique in Mumbai
If there is a possibility of losing fertility, men may choose to bank sperm. This is a crucial alternative for males who have yet to start a family or whose family is incomplete.
Even if the samples have a low sperm count, all men who intend to father a child in the future should consider freezing semen or testicular tissue.
Semen freezing is the procedure of collecting, freezing, and preserving sperms using particular chemical protectants such as liquid nitrogen. This method is also known as sperm banking or semen cryopreservation.
Sperms can be retained in good quality in liquid nitrogen at -196°C for many years. The sperm can be thawed and used for procedures like intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF) in the future. Sperm banks also collect and preserve donor sperms.
Babies & Us IVF Centre is outfitted with cutting-edge medical infrastructure and technology to offer fertility preservation services such as egg freezing and semen freezing technique in Mumbai.
Moreover, Babies & Us is one of the leading IVF centre in Mumbai. In addition to IVF, we provide other assisted reproductive services, including ICSI, IMSI.
If you are keen to know about semen freezing, scroll down to read this helpful article.
Let’s Look at the Steps of Semen Freezing Procedure in Mumbai at Babies & Us
1. Semen collection
- Initially, the fertility expert will recommend blood tests to sperm donors to check for HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.
- The individual may be given the option of submitting a semen sample at home or in the lab.
- Men who choose to provide the sample at the lab will be offered a private area and visual material. Doctors may give detailed instructions to those who collect semen at home.
- Doctors recommend men not to ejaculate for two to five days before delivering a sample for best results. The sperm count could be low if they ejaculated recently. Many sperms might be immotile if the last ejaculation was too long ago.
- Depending on the volume of the ejaculate and the period since the last ejaculation, a single ejaculate might contain 40 million to 600 million sperms.
- Patients may choose to bank sperm from a single ejaculation (one collection can generate one to six vials of sperm). However, doctors often suggest men to provide subsequent samples.
- In a sterile container, sperm samples are collected. Lab technicians analyze the samples for volume, viscosity, and pH levels. They also examine the sperm under a microscope for motility, sperm count, morphology, and other critical characteristics.
- Before sperm banking, many labs demand an initial test freeze of the sperm.
2. Freezing process
To prevent sperm damage from freezing, the technician adds cryoprotectant to the sperm sample. Cryoprotectants are low-molecular-weight, highly permeable compounds that protect sperm against ice crystallization-induced freeze damage.
Cryopreservation takes place in two ways:
- Slow freezing includes cooling sperm in two or three phases over two to four hours. After that, the technician submerges the specimen in liquid nitrogen at a temperature of -196°C.
- Rapid freezing necessitates eight to ten minutes of direct contact between sterile straws holding the samples and nitrogen vapours, followed by immersion in liquid nitrogen at -196°C.
3. Thawing process
- The thawing of sperm is just as critical as freezing. The cell must be allowed to resume normal biological functions while avoiding drastic temperature swings.
- A thawing temperature of 37°C is maintained in most cryopreservation techniques. Even though higher thawing temperatures allow for faster heating, the hazards of cell damage prevent them from being used.
- After thawing the sperm cells, the technician washes them in a culture media. Then, centrifuge them to separate the cryopreservation solution.
Who is eligible for semen freezing?
A man may consider freezing his semen if he:
- Have a condition or facing medical treatment for an illness that may affect his fertility.
- Have a low sperm count, or the sperm quality is declining.
- Is about to have a vasectomy and want sperm if he changes his mind about having (more) children.
- Have difficulty producing a semen specimen on the day of fertility treatment.
- Is at risk of injury or death (for example, a member of the Armed Forces who is being deployed to a war zone).
- Is a male transitioning to a female may want to preserve fertility before starting the hormone therapy or having reconstructive surgery. Both treatments can lead to the partial or total loss of male fertility.
How effective is sperm freezing?
- Since 1953, sperm freezing has been a success. It is a highly effective method for men who want to preserve their fertility for personal or medical reasons.
- Of course, some sperm do not survive the freezing process. Sperm survives thawing at a rate of more than 50%. This reduction isn’t a concern for successfully having a healthy baby if the sample is high quality.
- This is because the average sperm count per millilitre of semen varies from 15 million to more than 200 million. Only 10 million motile sperms are essential for inseminations and single sperm for each egg fertilization in IVF.
- Frozen sperm has the same fertilization capacity as fresh sperm.
- Besides, there is no evidence that using frozen sperm raises the likelihood of health issues in babies.
Are there any legal considerations for semen freezing in India?
- Yes. When you register to freeze your sperm, you will be asked to sign legal documents outlining what will happen to your sperm if you don’t pay your storage costs, for example.
- You will also set the rules for how you or your partner will use (or discard) the sample, including what will happen if you die.
- You can, for example, make an agreement that either terminates or allows a legally authorized representative (such as your spouse) to use or terminate it if you die.
- Some clinics may need you to obtain a witness or have the paperwork witnessed by a notary public.
- If you have the finances, sperm freezing can be an excellent choice for preserving your fertility to have a biological child.
This is particularly true if you are:
- considering IVF
- getting older
- undertaking specific treatments or surgeries
- working in a hazardous environment
The semen freezing technique in Mumbai at Babies & Us is highly efficient and poses minimal risks. If you think it would be a good option for you or your family, speak with a fertility expert.