When a potential sperm donor approaches a trusted sperm bank, a trial sample of sperm is tested before samples are accepted for use. This testing is part of the screening process at trusted sperm banks, but the testing is not 100% accurate and not all sperm banks test for all genetic conditions.
According to a study published in the journal Fertility and Sterility, of 26 sperm banks surveyed, most tested for conditions like cystic fibrosis and chromosome anomalies. Some sperm banks tested for conditions associated with a particular group of people like Tay Sachs disease, most prevalent in the Jewish population, but other rarer genetic conditions were not part of the screening process.
There are reports from across the United States and the world of children born with genetic conditions inherited from the biological father – the sperm donor. Conditions include cystic fibrosis, spinal muscular atrophy and hypertropic cardiomyopathy.
The Food and Drug Administration does NOT require testing for genetic diseases so there are NO guarantees the sperm you’re purchasing has been tested, even if the sperm bank claims testing has been completed. The New England Cryogenic Center purchased sperm from Rocky Mountain Cryobank prior to April 2010. The sperm was supposedly tested for genetic diseases, but the parents of one child born after using on sperm donation found out the testing was faulty when their son was born with cystic fibrosis.
Sperm banks do NOT have to test sperm donations for genetic diseases or conditions. Parents have the right to request genetic testing, but the request will not be granted by all sperm banks. Seeking out trusted sperm banks with verified genetic testing practices is the best way to lower your chances of buying unhealthy sperm.