Sperm Bank

Definition - What does Sperm Bank mean?

A sperm bank is a place where sperm is collected and stored so that it can later be used to fertilize a woman's egg. Individuals or couples wishing to become pregnant may access a sperm bank in order to obtain donor sperm. Sperm banks can also provide storage to men who wish to freeze their sperm in order to preserve their fertility.

FertilitySmarts explains Sperm Bank

Donated sperm from a sperm bank can either be injected into a woman's uterus to fertilize her egg or used to fertilize an egg in a lab setting using in vitro fertilization (IVF). The man who supplied the sperm is then the biological father of the child.

Those most likely to access a sperm bank and use donor sperm include women who do not have a partner but wish to become pregnant, lesbian couples, and heterosexual couples in which a problem with the man's sperm has lead to infertility.

Sperm banks perform a thorough medical screening on the men who donate their sperm. This screening includes tests for infectious diseases, medical problems, psychological issues, and genetic disorders. Information available to those selecting a donor from a sperm bank often includes the donor's height, weight, race, personal history, academic performance, and other demographic information. It may also be possible to see a photo of the donor and other information they have provided about themselves.

Sperm donated to sperm banks is frozen for later use. This sperm can be stored indefinitely. There have been cases of healthy babies born using sperm that was stored for more than 20 years.

Sperm banks also offer sperm storage for men who wish to preserve their sperm for later use. This may be especially relevant to men who will be undergoing certain medical procedures that could impact their fertility, such as chemotherapy.

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