Sign In
  • ENG

Father’s Day: Sperm Cryopreservation Can Help Men With Cancer To Fulfill Their Fatherhood Dream

Father’s Day: Sperm Cryopreservation Can Help Men With Cancer To Fulfill Their Fatherhood Dream

Men with cancer should consider Cryopreservation before their treatment starts. Here is everything you need to know about this process.

Written by Editorial Team |Updated : June 18, 2022 11:31 AM IST

Many cancers attack men who are very young. Fortunately, with advancement in medicine and science, patients with cancer now have better treatment options. These medications, however, may have a negative impact on these patients' fertility. Cancer therapies like chemotherapy and radiation can alter spermatogenesis irreversibly. In cases like these, sperm cryopreservation is a viable approach for preserving male reproductive potential. Here is everything you need to know about Cryopreservation of sperm for men with cancer who want to fulfill their fatherhood dream.

What is Cryopreservation?

Sperm cryopreservation (also known as sperm banking or sperm freezing) is a method of storing sperm cells. Following cryopreservation, sperm can be utilized indefinitely. The longest period of successful storage for human sperm has been reported to be 24 years. It can be used to preserve fertility for men who are having a vasectomy or are undergoing treatments that may affect their fertility, such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or surgery.

How cancer treatment affects the fertility of men?

Cancer therapies are necessary for your long-term health, but they can impair the reproductive organs and glands that regulate fertility.

Also Read

More News

  • Chemotherapy (particularly alkylating medications) can harm men's sperm and young boys' sperm-forming cells.
  • Hormone therapy (also known as endocrine therapy) can reduce sperm production.
  • Infertility can be caused by radiation therapy to the reproductive organs, along with radiation near the abdomen, pelvis, or spine, which lowers sperm counts and testosterone levels. Radiation can harm sperm cells as well as the stem cells that create them. Radiation therapy to the brain can harm the pituitary gland, reducing testosterone and sperm production.
  • During surgery to eliminate cancer, the sex organs are removed or impaired in some cases.

How is sperm collected in Cryopreservation?

Collecting sperm to preserve is a simple, noninvasive operation for many guys. You'll be led to a separate room, where you'll be requested to provide your sperm in a special container.

A typical sperm sample contains between 5 and 20 million sperm per milliliter and can be separated into many vials for storage. Because sperm production is influenced by a variety of conditions, you may be requested to collect many samples. This increases your odds of subsequently being able to have a child.

How is sperm cryopreserved?

Liquid nitrogen is used to freeze sperm. In cryogenic vials, sperm are gently combined with a cryoprotectant, which sucks water out of the sperm cell to prevent harm during freezing. They are then submerged in liquid nitrogen and frozen at a temperature of -196 degree C or below. Finally, the sperm vials are placed in liquid nitrogen storage chambers to keep their temperature low.

How long can the sperm be stored?

Sperm might be frozen eternally if properly stored within liquid nitrogen and the sample was of good quality to begin with. There is no definitive end date for frozen sperm. Because modern cryopreservation procedures are so advanced, sperm health and integrity are preserved throughout the process. It has been possible to use sperm that has been frozen for more than 20 years with success.


Cryopreservation has made it possible for men dealing with fertility issues because of various reasons, to be able to become father in the future in a safe and effective manner. Patients with cancer should consider Cryopreservation before their treatment starts. This process is highly effective and carries few risks. If you think it would be a good option for you or your family, speak with your fertility professional.

The article is contributed by Dr. Pallavi Prasad, Fertility Consultant at Nova IVF Fertility, Bengaluru.

Total Wellness is now just a click away.

Follow us on