What is donor insemination?

This treatment for male infertility involves using an external source of sperm to inseminate an egg. Single women and lesbian mothers also benefit from this procedure.

This sounds relatively straightforward but there are several issues to consider. These include obtaining donor sperm to initiate conception and the long term effects of this on the child.

Your male partner may feel angry or resentful at the thought of bringing up a child which he has not biologically fathered. And, if you have religious beliefs then there are ethical issues to be addressed.

A very important legal aspect of this are the legal rights of the child in regard to discovering who his/her ‘real’ father is. And this varies from one country to another.

Overview of Donor Insemination

Sperm is harvested from an anonymous donor. This sperm is frozen and stored at specialised sperm banks. Each donor has their own bio-profile which includes age, height and weight. Other aspects include education levels, background and interests.

This information is useful if you are looking to find a donor which matches your personal expectations. For example, you may want someone who has been educated to university standard as that fits in with your lifestyle and aspirations.

Another important factor is that of screening: sperm is regularly screened for hepatitis B and C, cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anaemia and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

There is the option to have sperm from someone you know rather than an anonymous donor. This may be a good friend or someone you feel is best suited to your needs. This does have its advantages in that you know who is donating the sperm (so you know what you are getting) but it’s not without its problems as well. One of these being the role that person will play in your child’s life.

This sperm is then inserted into the woman’s cervix during ovulation.

Donor insemination Guide Index:

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