Once you make the decision to undergo
medical treatment after you have been diagnosed with
prostate cancer, your ability to father a child in the
future may be drastically affected. Even if becoming
a father is not a priority for you at this time, or
you are not planning on having children right now, it
is important to think beyond the present. If you at
least want the opportunity to father children, consider
sperm banking. No matter what happens to your fertility
after treatment, banking even one sperm sample provides
the chance for you to father a biological child later
In a private room at the sperm bank you collect a sample of your semen. Through self-stimulation you then ejaculate into a sanitized cup. To help obtain a specimen, your partner may accompany you. Videos and literature may be provided in every room or available upon request.
Once you are finished, submit your semen sample. A lab test will determine your sperm count and how many of them are actively swimming. Since viruses can be transmitted through semen, you will also be tested for sexually transmitted diseases, including hepatitis and HIV. Understand that your confidentiality will be respected. Next, the semen is placed in a confined container and frozen at extremely low temperatures. Semen samples can be safely stored in this frozen state for 10 years or longer and used at your discretion. When you and your partner are ready to start a family, the stored sperm and extracted egg are combined in a laboratory dish, creating an embryo that is eventually implanted into the uterus and developed naturally. This process is called in vitro fertilization.
Prior to receiving prostate cancer treatment you should explore the possibilities of sperm banking. Be sure to fully discuss all of your questions and concerns with your doctor. Furthermore, investigate the costs of sperm banking, and whether or not your insurance will cover those fees.