Arizona Andrology Laboratory & Cryobank
Providing state-of-the-art male fertility testing, processing, cryopreservation, and storage

Gateway Wellness Center - 850 N. Kolb Road, Tucson, AZ 85710

Phone: 520-885-2689 - Fax: 520-731-0715

    

Cryopreservation
    
Cryopreservation of semen, also known as freezing or banking, allows sperm to be preserved and stored at ultra-low temperatures for future fertility procedures.  A complete semen analysis is performed to determine the quality of the specimen and the total number of motile sperm that are present.  Based on the overall quality and number of motile sperm present, the semen sample is then mixed with specific volumes of media and preservant and divided into a calculated number of vials.  These vials are then slowly cooled down to extremely low temperatures and stored in liquid nitrogen tanks.  Cryopreserved semen can remain viable for use for many decades, thus preserving the fertility potential of the patient for many years.
    
Cryopreservation of sperm has several important applications:
    
· Before a vasectomy – Provides the patient with the option of storing his   sperm should future circumstances arise whereby fertility potential is desired.
    
· Before radiation or chemotherapy – Many types of therapy can have the unfortunate side effect of leaving a man sterile.  Cryopreservation of semen can preserve the sperm before there are any possible adverse fertility affects of the treatment.
    
· Before certain surgeries – Some surgical procedures may adversely affect the nerves that contribute to normal erectile function, resulting in partial or complete impotence.  As with certain radiation or chemotherapy treatments, cryopreservation of semen can provide the patient with a measure of “fertility insurance” for future use.
    
· During a reversal procedure – While performing the reversal procedure, the surgeon may be able to aspirate viable sperm, or take a small biopsy of the testicular tissue that contains viable sperm.  In either case, these sperm can be cryopreserved and stored, giving the patient even more future fertility options.
    
· Before an assisted reproductive technique – Having cryopreserved semen samples in storage provides a readily available source of viable sperm for a scheduled IUI (intrauterine insemination), IVF (in vitro fertilization), ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection – an advanced IVF procedure), or other ART (assisted reproductive technology) procedures in case the male is unable or unavailable to provide a semen fresh sample.
    
· Patients employed in high risk / occupational hazard areas – Many jobs may expose men to potentially hazardous materials, chemicals, vapors or other environmental factors that can a negative impact on their fertility or overall health. 
    
· Patients with low sperm counts – Several semen samples can be cryopreserved and then “pooled together” to achieve an acceptable number of motile sperm for an intrauterine insemination, or IUI, which is a much less expensive option than IVF, ICSI, or other ART procedures. 
    

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