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sperms bank

sperm. bank


Looking for the right sperm? 

Here's a look into the   kind of services that Cytochem, the semen bank at Tilak Road offers.



Shocking as it may sound, a few years ago, the semen samples that came for regular testing at the pathology labs in the city were taken and used for artificial insemination. No tests were done to check for HIV and venereal diseases. Neither was one sure if the sperm sample had enough motile (alive) sperms for fertilisation with the egg.

The request for sperm samples became so frequent that Drs. Milind Mirashi and Pravin Thakar decided to extend their laboratory to include a bank where sperm samples could be frozen and quality controlled; so that tested samples could be made available to infertile couples of the city. Cytochem, Pune's first and only sperm bank was established in 1992. Explaining the rising number of requests for these samples, Dr.Thakar says, "Ten to fifteen percent of Indian couples face infertility, and in most cases, the cause is the husband's inadequate sperm count."


 

Artificial Insemination by the donor is a simple procedure whereby a woman whose husband has no sperms in his semen or has sub-fertile sperms, is inseminated with a semen sample . For rupees four hundred, getting quality samples so close to home is like a miracle for the couples." Other than the quality of the samples, the time factor is extremely important in infertility cases." notes Dr.Thakar.

A woman undergoing treatment has to be artificially inseminated exactly on the fourteenth day of the cycle or within twenty-four hours of ovulation. Otherwise, she would lose an entire cycle and would have to prolong her treatment to the next one. Since the infertility  treatment costs a lot for the patient, availability of samples at any given time of the day and month is of great importance, a requirement that the lab fulfills. Dr. Thakar explains the procedure of freezing samples, "After three days of abstinence, donors are  asked to give the semen samples . The donors are strictly screened, their family history is looked into and they are questioned about any history of illness so as to prevent transmission of hereditary diseases. A record of physical characteristics and blood groups are maintained so that it can later be matched with the recipient couple."


 
Tests for HIV, VDRL and Hepatitis B are carried out and the tests are repeated after three months so as to   ensure that the samples are positively free from diseases. According to the doctors, what they say is complicated and difficult in this business, is to get the donors to give their samples. "Donors have to be made aware of the physical and psychological problems of the couple under treatment. The trauma they undergo and the society's attitude to them to make them realize that the act of donating a sample will go a long way in bringing happiness in someone's life," emphasizes Dr.Thakar.


He continues, "It should also be clear to the donor that  complete secrecy will be maintained regarding his identity. Once the donor signs a consent form, the information is fed into the computer in a coded form, accessible only to the two doctors."  Dr. Sunita Tandulwarkar, gynaecologist who has been regularly taking samples from the lab opines, "The success rate for my patients (with no female infertility factor) is as high as sixty to seventy percent after I started taking the samples from Cytochem." Remarks like these have been a big boost to the work done in the lab. The duo have simultaneously started storing samples for patients who have been prescribed to undergo treatments like chemotherapy or radio therapy, so that the samples can be used later by their wives when they want to concieve. (Dr.Pravin Thakar and Dr. Milind Mirashi can be contacted on 4475580)