Does freezing sperm damage it?

2 fertility expert(s) answered this question

Answer from: Melvin H. Thornton, Associate Professor

Gynaecologist, Medical Director & IVF Director Global Fertility & Genetics
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When you freeze sperm, there’s no impact on the quality. Giving an example; we’ve been using frozen donor sperm to help women get pregnant for many years. Typically, once you freeze the sperm, the sperm survives very nicely afterward. Now the problem is that some men who are freezing for other purposes such as cancer diagnosis may already have a low sperm count because of the cancer diagnosis. Those cases are very difficult because when you have a low sperm count, the survival of the sperm may not be as good as if your sperm count was healthy. So it’s important that once you’re diagnosed with cancer, go see a reproductive specialist, do a sperm analysis to see what your sperm count looks like. If your sperm count is nice and healthy, freeze your sperm right away. If it’s low or you don’t have any sperm at all, then there are other techniques that we may have to use to extract sperm from the testicle to help you freeze it for the future or freezing testicular tissue as well.

Answer from: Ioannis Zervomanolakis, PhD

Gynaecologist, Obstetrician Hygeia IVF Athens
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There is no negative impact or damage during sperm freezing at all. Just keep in mind that we use at least two straws when we decide to freeze sperm freezing in order to make sure that when we perform thawing of this sample, we have enough sperm to use.

About this question:

Can freezing sperm cause any damage to the genetic material?

Not only sperm donors freeze their sperm. Men who are not ready to have a baby just yet, men before cancer treatment, or partners of women undergoing IVF can also freeze their sperm. This is known as sperm freezing or cryopreservation and is a great way of preserving your reproductive cells for later use. Can your sperm be damaged after freezing and thawing?

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