Freezing Sperm: Is It Worth Considering?
A person may want to store their sperm in liquid nitrogen for a number of reasons, including apprehension about their fertility deteriorating with age or anticipation of cancer therapies that may negatively impact sperm quality. The process of collecting and storing sperm by freezing it is known as sperm freezing, sperm banking, or sperm cryopreservation. Frozen sperm can be thawed and utilized for in vitro fertilization or intrauterine insemination. There are several, sometimes surprising, reasons why people choose to store their sperm in a freezer. Here’s all you need to know about freezing and storing your sperm, thawing it for use in fertility treatments, and the overall efficacy of using frozen sperm if you’re wondering about the process.
Age-Related Sperm Preservation Desire
The quality of sperm declines with age for several causes, including but not limited to alcohol and drug use, smoking, obesity, poor nutrition, and stress. Because of this, sperm from men in their twenties is often much more robust than sperm from men in their fifties. Researchers have confirmed that a man’s sperm and semen quality decrease with age. Those who hope to start a family in the future may want to think about storing their sperm in a freezer now. Dr. Herati explains, “Things happen in life.” If a person waits until they are 20 to freeze their sperm, they won’t have to worry about it later. Research has also linked older fathers to a higher risk of pregnancy problems and infant abnormalities. Heart defects, autism, schizophrenia, bipolar illness, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are only few of the conditions whose prevalence rises in tandem with the age of the father.
A Confirmed (or possible) Cancer Diagnosis
Fertility can be negatively impacted by cancer therapies like radiation and chemotherapy, which can reduce sperm quality and quantity. Fertility can be preserved by collecting and storing sperm before undergoing these procedures. Cancer patients had a low rate of sperm freezing. Sometimes this is due to a lack of knowledge on the part of men: a study of more than 900 males, just 60% of those surveyed said just 51% reported they were offered sperm banking after being told that infertility was a possible side effect of cancer therapy. Patients who were informed of the potential effects of cancer therapy on fertility were more likely to opt for sperm banking.
Doing Dangerous Work
Sperm freezing is an option for people in high-risk professions like construction, emergency response, and active military service. When one spouse suffers an injury or passes away, the other can use the stored sperm. Workers in industries where they are exposed to dangerous chemicals like pesticides or lead may choose to store their sperm for future use.
A fertility clinic will be able to help you defrost your sperm for use in IVF procedures. Thawed sperm is usually only used in clinics for in vitro fertilization (IVF) or intrauterine insemination (IUI), and not at home. There are many situations in which sperm freezing is a great choice. So, if you’re considering this option and want to discuss it with your doctor, don’t be shy