Monday, March 7, 2011

Donor Issues

As if this week weren't already bad enough my back up donor is not available.  He had 8 vials available last week!  I'm waiting to hear back if this is permanent or just temporary.  The rep's e-mail made it sound temporary but I can't be sure until I get the direct word but I am feeling very frustrated.  What is going on this week?

I already have limited choice by virtue of the fact that I'm CMV-, the same as 15% of the population.  So, out of the <200 donors available in Canada through importation of donor sperm (because there are only 5 active Canadian donors) I'm only able to START from less than 30 candidates.  Then I have to weed out based on physical characteristics such as hair and eye colour, height, body build, and skin colour.  Then I have to weed out based on medical history.  I refuse to introduce any female cancer genes into my family since we have none.  Same goes for diabetes and alzheimer's.  What I'm left with is a pretty small list to choose from.

I asked the company rep if they'd be getting more donors because I'm having a hard time finding someone who meets my criteria.  She asked when the last time was that I checked the lists.  February, before my unlimited access expired.  They haven't added more than 5.  And they've pulled some of the European ones for now because of Health Canada regulations over what the donors wrote in their long answer questionnaires.  I don't understand why I see the same 40 guys on the lists every time I check.  Are they really that popular that they keep donating?  Or do they keep showing up for the money and no one really wants their sperm leaving all these donors taking up shelf space from other potential donors whose goods could be imported into Canada?

This isn't like choosing pasta sauce at the grocery store.  It isn't a time to look at the shelf and say, "Hmmm, I don't know but why don't we just pick something because I'm feeling adventurous." 

This is ridiculous.


  1. Wow. You seem so stressed right now. I can't say that I know what you're going through. I live 20 miles from one cryobank and there are another two in my state alone. I wish it were going easier for you and I'm sure that when you do get a donor it'll be the one you need for your perfect little one.

  2. OMG! You've certainly caught me at a very stressed out time. I'm not normally like this.

    Apparently there is some paperwork snafu with the clinic and the regulators and there is a 6-8 week waiting period. So, I'm really crossing my fingers and hoping this is all it is and that my back up donor will still be available by May. I've already told the company rep that I want to be notified as soon as the issue is resolved so I can order vials of this donor. But I'm going to take a look at those lists again just so that I have a 2nd backup.

    Who knew that getting sperm would be so problematic?

  3. YIkes! I'm so sorry you're having to deal with that crud. Are you allowed to use a different sperm bank? I hope this gets resolved for you soon.

  4. Marielle, we're in a very odd situation in Canada because donors can't be paid. That has resulted in about 5 active Canadian donors. The rest has to be imported and there are only 2 companies approved for importation and they don't import from every sperm bank in the US and Europe, just a total of 4 I think.

    Donors here have to undergo extra testing they don't elsewhere so not every donor available at the originating bank is available in Canada. And that is so frustrating. Especially because I am CMV-. I CAN'T use CMV+ sperm. I really think the importers need to consider upping not just the total number of donors available but also increase the number of Open ID donors and CMV- ones as well.