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Sperm donation

Details donor selection as a stage in sperm donation.

Selection of sperm donors

The sperm donors in the United Kingdom are altruistic volunteers. This means no financial gains to the donors in donating their sperm, they are only paid reasonable expenses. Donors are paid in some countries.There is a national shortfall in sperm donors in the UK . Subsequently,some patients seek treatment abroad to address their needs.

Following an extensive public consultation; addressing concerns about treating donors fairly and valuing their contribution as well as the need to retain donors. the HFEA in the UK agreed new policies to improve sperm donation services including the compensation that donors can receive. The new scheme will include a fixed sum of 35 sterling per visit including expenses for sperm donors (HFEA October 2011)

Reasons for men who donate their sperm include altruistic motive, financial incentive etc. In the past, local university students were the group most commonly targeted for sperm donation for financial reason. However, recent data from UK showed that about 70% of men who donated sperm in the period between 2004 and 2005 were over 30 year old and 45% have children of their own and who wished to help others. Couples may wish to use a known donor or a relative of the husband so that the baby will be related to both parents. This is acceptable if all parties agree. However there are many ethical, psychological and moral issues involved in using a known donor.Sperm donation is uncommon within some ethnic groups.

All prospective sperm donors should be healthy men and of normal intelligence and fertility with no history of mental disorders or genetic or inherited or sexually transmitted diseases. The donors should be between 18 and 40 years old (up to 40 in the USA). There is evidence of an increased risk of miscarriage, congenital malformation and autism in the children of men above 40 years (UK guidelines 2008, Human Fertility;11:201-210). Preferably, they should have had healthy children of their own.

The center may contact the potential donor's doctor (with donor permission) to see if he or she knows of any reason that precludes the donor from donation.

Because some sperm die during freezing procedures, it is essential for sperm donors to have a high number of normal motile sperm in the ejaculate. Some fertile men may not be suitable as sperm donors.

Sperm donors hould undergo complete physical and genital examination including checking for urethral discharge, genital warts and ulcers. Donors will not be accepted if any of these findings are present.

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