Similarly to egg freezing, sperm cryopreservation helps preserve your fertility in a number of situations:
- If you are going to have a vasectomy;
- If you are suffering from cancer and need to protect your sperm cells from treatments that may affect your reproductive system;
- If you have a medical condition that may affect your fertility in the future;
- If you are going to do MAR (Medically Assisted Reproduction) treatment but will be out of the country on the day of your partner’s eggs insemination;
- If you are undergoing MAR treatment but have difficulty in producing a sperm sample on the day of your partner’s eggs insemination;
- If you have a low sperm count in your ejaculate (our embryologists may suggest sperm cryopreservation as a way of preserving your sperm cells for a future MAR treatment);
- If you have a viral infection (HBV, HCV, HIV or HTLV) and are going to undergo IVF or ICSI treatment at AVA Clinic, it will be necessary to wash and cryopreserve your sperm for testing and confirmation that your sample is negative;
- If you are transsexual and are going to start hormone therapy and want to preserve sperm cells for future MAR treatments.
How does sperm freezing work?
Sperm freezing is done after providing a sample by masturbation in the total privacy of a special room for that purpose. Our team of embryologists will then freeze your sperm using specific cryopreservation methods (cryopreservation in liquid nitrogen tanks at -196ºC). If you have difficulty providing a sperm sample by masturbation, it is also possible to obtain sperm cells in a testicular biopsy.
How long can sperm be frozen for?
There is no time limit on cryopreservation of sperm. As is the case with eggs, it can be preserved indefinitely. Under the Portuguese law, cryopreservation of sperm lasts for five years, which can be renewed if the patient wishes.
How many samples do I need to provide?
We normally recommend a minimum of two sperm samples. However, you can discuss this at an appointment in which we will decide the right number in your specific case.
Is pregnancy guaranteed with frozen sperm?
It is possible to achieve a pregnancy after thawing the sperm, which can be used in MAR treatments (FIV or ICSI, depending on the quality of the frozen sperm).
MAR treatments using cryopreserved sperm have a very similar success rate to those with fresh sperm. However, if you decide to cryopreserve sperm at AVA Clinic you will attend an appointment with one of our physicians to discuss all your options and possibilities of a future MAR treatment.
What do I have to do to freeze sperm at AVA Clinic?
If you have any questions about the sperm freezing process, please contact us directly and we will be happy to answer them and give you all the information you need.