The freezing of sperm is carried out with the help of a special environment through the so-called “fast method”. In frozen form, the sperm can survive for decades without a trace of damage. When needed, the sperm is defreezed in a certain way, after which is activated with specific species and is used for the purposes of different assisted reproductive technologies. Semen freezing can be helpful for:
- Couples put on asissted reproductive technologies, in which in the day of the procedure the partner will be absent.
- Poor semen parameters, in order to accumulate more sperm. It is possible to freeze several times, thus storing separate frozen seed samples. If necessary, the samples are collected and processed. This results in more sperm ready to be used;
- Difficulty of the partner to secrete semen – in this case it is recommended to pre-freeze semen. The frozen semen sample is thawed and used if on the day of intrauterine insemination or follicle puncture in in vitro / ICSI the partner fails to ejaculate;
- men befoe undergoing radiation therapy or chemotherapy
- before vasectomy;
- before undergoing surgical interventions for oncological and other diseases of the testicles;
- cases of men with Azoospermia (lack of sperm in the ejaculate), when a biopsy reveals sperm in the epididymis or testis;
- storage of material for the donor program ;
- personal choice.
When freezing semen you have to:
- make an appointmentда for freezing and storage of sperm, with sexual abstinence between 3 and 5 days, without alcohol and antibiotics ;
- perform preliminary tests, which include: microbiology of ejaculate and virology – AIDS, Syphilis, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C ;
- To fill in a Declaration of informed consent for freezing and storage of sperm, which also indicates the desired shelf life.
On the day of ejaculation, the material is evaluated and an opinion is given as to whether it is suitable for freezing. The next step is to perform a cryotolerance test – a small part of the ejaculate is frozen and thawed in order to assess the survival of sperm after thawing.
The semen is frozen in special cryopreservation media, certified for quality and approved for use in ART procedures, stored for storage in specially designed containers with liquid nitrogen.