Sperm Washing Allows HIV-Positive Men To Have Healthy Kids

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Apr 24, 2017 11:50 AM EDT

Babies born from one or both HIV-positive parents will also acquire the virus. (Photo : Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Newborns of men who have immunodeficiency virus (HIV) also acquire the disease. But HIV-infected men can now have healthy kids with the help of sperm washing.

According to EFE, the techniques of sperm washing enable couples to begin a pregnancy while the husband is positive with HIV. Parents can have kids without worry that they will be infected by the virus.

The sperm washing procedure provides a new hope to couples in which the male is the HIV carrier. There are also methods already available preventing the virus for women who want to bear healthy children, Dr. Roberto Epifanio, the director of IVI Panama told the news outlet.

Sperm washing involves cleansing of the semen of HIV-positive men as per specialist Josseline Flores. The sperm cells are then integrated with methods of reproductive technology such as intrauterine insemination and in vitro fertilization.

"We first do a spermogram of the sample and then a filtering wash to remove the cells and sediments floating in the seminal liquid," Flores said. The cycle of sperm washing is repeated six times utilizing a centrifuge to sort out the sperm cells, she added.

After sperm washing, IVI sends a sperm sample to the laboratory of Gorgas Commemorative Institute. This specializes in the diagnosis and managing of infectious diseases. It conducts a molecular examination of the spermatozoa based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The process will guarantee that there are no remnants of HIV remained in the washed sperms, Alianza News reported.

The quality of sperm cells forward for sperm washing decreases between by 15 and 20 percent. As a result, the availability of the sample acquired after the procedure is usually very low. "The chance of a sample coming out of the treatment HIV positive is very low, and if the patient has the normal defenses and low levels of the virus detected in the blood, the result will be favorable," Dr. Epifanio said.

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