Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Radical Changes Needed To Increase Number Of Sperm Donors In The UK, Fertility Experts Urge

Date:
November 17, 2008
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
A radical overhaul of sperm donation services is needed to address the critical shortage of sperm donors in the UK, say two fertility experts.

A radical overhaul of sperm donation services is needed to address the critical shortage of sperm donors in the UK, say two fertility experts in an editorial on bmj.com today.

Mark Hamilton, Chairman of the British Fertility Society, and Allan Pacey, Secretary of the British Fertility Society, say that the UK is struggling to meet the demand for donated sperm and many clinics have long waiting lists or have been forced to stop providing services altogether.

They believe that the removal of donor anonymity in 2005 may have contributed to the current shortage of donors.

With around 4000 UK patients requiring donor sperm each year, and the UK legal limit of 10 pregnancies from a single donor, a minimum of 500 new donors are needed every year to meet demand. But in 2006 there were only 307 new registrations.

The authors say increasing the number of families that can be created from a single donor should be considered. To prevent siblings born from donation later inadvertently having children together, UK law limits the number of families that can be created from any one donor to 10. But Hamilton and Pacey argue that this figure is arbitrary and not evidence based, and a more flexible approach is needed.

They point out that the size of the UK population is enough for a large safety margin to already exist. Interestingly, in the Netherlands, which has a smaller population than the UK, the upper limit is 25 offspring per donor, while in France it is five.

The British Fertility Society has called for major changes in the organisation of recruitment services to increase the number of new donors. Possible changes that Hamilton and Pacey describe include implementing a new national service framework for sperm donation with large regional centres providing the bulk of donor management and smaller local centres providing services for recipients. Currently, up to 35% of potential donors are lost after their first enquiry and never assessed. Making services more accessible and efficient may reduce this figure and encourage more men to participate.

According to the authors, another option would be the introduction of sperm sharing schemes that would work along the same lines as egg sharing programmes that are already in place in the UK, whereby fertile male partners of women who need IVF could become donors and have their fertility treatment partly funded by sperm donation.

Some options that the British Fertility Society decided not to recommend, due to concerns over safety standards, include increasing the age limit of donors from the present 40 years and lowering the acceptable levels of semen quality.

Both Hamilton and Pacey conclude that all these proposals need to be evaluated, so future decisions and policies can be based on clear evidence.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Radical Changes Needed To Increase Number Of Sperm Donors In The UK, Fertility Experts Urge." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112160915.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2008, November 17). Radical Changes Needed To Increase Number Of Sperm Donors In The UK, Fertility Experts Urge. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112160915.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Radical Changes Needed To Increase Number Of Sperm Donors In The UK, Fertility Experts Urge." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112160915.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins