Women can make use of semen donation in the following situations:
- When their partner’s semen is highly pathological coupled with poor results from in vitro fertilisation.
- A lack of spermatozoa (azoospermia) both in the ejaculate and in the testicular biopsy (outpatient procedure under local anaesthetic).
- When the man is a carrier of a genetic disease which cannot be studied in the embryos.
- When the man is a carrier of a sexually transmitted disease and it is not possible to eliminate the virus from the semen.
- When chromosomal abnormalities are detected in the semen.
- When the man has a positive blood group (homozygous state), and the woman has a negative one as well as being isoimmunised (she produces antibodies which attack the red blood cells of the foetus which has a positive blood group).
- In the case of women who do not have a partner.
The selection of semen donors is controlled by law and includes men over the age of 18 who have a good state of physical and mental health, who test negative for infectious diseases, have a normal karyotype and do not have a family history of serious hereditary diseases. The semen donation process is anonymous and altruistic, although the law makes provision for compensation for any inconvenience experienced in each donation.
The semen samples are stored in a frozen state in semen banks and are kept in quarantine for a period of 6 months, after which the tests for infectious diseases are repeated in order to ensure that the donor is not in the early stages of an infection.
Finally, in the IVI clinics
, once it has been checked that there are no infections and that the semen has tolerated the freezing process sufficiently and maintained its quality, the samples are made available for use in treatments which are the same as those described elsewhere, whether for intrauterine insemination, an IVF
cycle or oocyte donation.