Step 3: Sperm collection

IVF treatment

If you have IVF treatment with a partner who provides sperm, we ask them to give a sample in a private room in the assisted conception unit (ACU). This happens on the same day as your egg collection.

If either of you feel anxious about giving a sample in the unit, please tell us in advance.

Before sperm collection

Your partner or donor (the person who donates sperm) should continue to have sex or masturbate, but stop 2 to 3 days before the sperm collection. This is to get the best sperm sample.

A laboratory examines the sperm sample. If the quality is not good enough to do IVF, the laboratory may recommend intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). This is when we inject each egg individually with a single sperm. It can improve the chances of fertilisation.

If you have treatment with frozen sperm, we only let the sample thaw and prepare it when we have collected your eggs.

Resource number: 2687/VER4
Last reviewed: July 2023
Next review: July 2026

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Contact us

If you have any questions about IVF, please contact our assisted conception unit (ACU).

Phone: 020 7188 2300

Email: [email protected]

Do you have any comments or concerns about your care?

Contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

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