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Five Things Men Need to Know About Becoming a Sperm Donor

Posted on March 1, 2022

Becoming a sperm donor is a wonderful way to help intended parents start the family they’ve always wanted. However, the process isn’t as simple as walking in to your local sperm bank and making a donation. Out of all applicants to the FCC donor program, less than three percent are accepted as donors. Even after an applicant is accepted, the health of the donor is continually monitored.

Your decision to become a sperm donor is admirable, and may lead to many happy families. However, it is not a choice that should be made lightly; this commitment will take up to a year of your time, and will affect you for the rest of your life. Here are some things to keep in mind as you make your decision.

It is a selective process

Although sperm donors are volunteers, there are very strict requirements to be accepted. The screening process includes a medical exam infectious disease testing and a fertility health test to ensure you are the highest quality candidate. Not only that, sperm banks have physical specifications on height and appearance--for example, many sperm banks disqualify donors on the short side. White donors under 5’9 typically aren’t accepted, though there are looser heigh requirements for men of other races.

There are a lot of tests

Genetic tests for sperm donors cover everything from overall sperm health to genetic conditions the donor may carry. Although the law dictates extensive medical and genetic tests are done on all volunteers, many sperm banks provide additional testing in order to ensure a thoroughly vetted collection of samples. Some examples of testing include:

  • Background Check

  • Keirsey Personality Profile

  • Infectious diseases

-HIV I / II Antibody

-HTLV I / II Antibody

-RPR (Syphilis)

-Chlamydia (every three months)

-Gonorrhea (every three months)

-CMV (Cytomegalovirus) Antibody (IgM and IgG)

-Hepatitis B Surface Antigen

-Hepatitis B Core Antibody

-Hepatitis C Viral Antibody

  • General Wellness

-Complete Blood Count

-Physical by medical practitioner

It is a commitment

Becoming a sperm donor is a time investment--sperm banks typically require you commit at least 6 months to the process. During this time, you will donate at least 1-2 times per week, and your health will be closely monitored. After you make your donations, your sperm sample will be tested again aftter being frozen and thawed.

You may not get paid right away

Sperm donation is certainly a rewarding experience, but monetary compensation is not often a driving factor in the decision. Donors are typically compensated for their time and for the procedural costs. The FDA also requires donated sperm to be frozen for six months prior to use, and because sperm donors don’t receive payment until their sperm is ready for use, there will be a delay in payment.

It may affect your sex life

It is common that volunteers are asked to abstain from ejaculation for 2-3 days before making their donation. With a regular donation cycle of 1-2 samples per week, sex between donations could face a timing issue. Be sure to discuss your decision to become a sperm donor with your partner if you have one, as this schedule may impact them at times.

If you are interested in becoming a sperm donor, there is much to consider. However, most sperm donors are happy with their decision, and find the experience to be gratifying overall. If you have questions, or to meet with an expert please contact us today!

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