Men and women say use of donor sperm could lead to increased stress and marital problems
(HealthDay News) – Infertile couples worry about the consequences of using donor eggs or sperm to achieve conception, according to research presented this week at the 64th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine in San Francisco.
Lauri A. Pasch, M.D., of the University of California in San Francisco, and colleagues studied 380 infertile couples who presented at reproductive endocrinology practices. The subjects had been married for a mean of 5.1 years, and the men and women had mean ages of 36.9 and 35.7, respectively. The researchers used a scale of 0-10 to score each partner's attitudes about different reproductive technologies.
The researchers found that men reported that the use of donor sperm would make them feel less in control of their lives than the use of donor eggs (2.6 versus 3.3) and lead to more personal stress (7.0 versus 6.1). Men also felt that the use of donor eggs would be more stressful for their partners (7.2 versus 6.7). They also found that women felt that the use of donor eggs would make them feel less in control of their lives (2.5 versus 3.1) and lead to more personal stress (8.2 versus 7.7). Both men and women were likely to believe that the use of donor sperm would cause more marital problems and decrease the sense that they created a child together.
"Interestingly, both men and women believe the use of donor sperm would lead to a decreased sense of having jointly created a child and increased marital problems, suggesting a unique underlying perception regarding the use of male donor gametes," the authors conclude.