Fertility treatment for HIV+ men makes parenthood possible
Thanks to the advances of highly active HIV drugs (HAART), most people with HIV can lead healthy and normal lives while managing the disease much like any other chronic condition. They can also become parents when they visit our Las Vegas fertility specialists for fertility treatment for HIV+ men.
A look at fertility treatment for HIV+ men
Our Las Vegas fertility specialists are helping men with HIV safely realize their dreams of parenthood. When performing fertility treatment for HIV+ men, we work with the Bedford Research Foundation in Boston, Massachusetts. It has developed a technique using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays to detect the HIV virus in semen and the process has four stages.
- Evaluation of the HIV-infected male partner. During this appointment, the man will provide information about when he became infected, his current health status, any coexisting infections and his current antiviral therapy. All of this information remains confidential.
- Collection of two HIV undoable specimens. A highly sensitive PCR assay for HIV will determine the semen viral burden by detecting free virus particles (HIV RNA) in seminal plasma and virus infected cells (HIV proviral DNA). Specimen collection is performed at the Bedford Research Foundation Clinical Laboratory in Massachusetts.
- Testing the semen specimens for HIV, washing the sperm and freezing it. This occurs in the laboratory. The laboratory ships frozen sperm from specimens with an undetectable viral burden to our Las Vegas fertility specialists for in vitro fertilization (IVF).
- IVF. In vitro fertilization utilizing sperm with an undetectable viral burden is the final step of fertility treatment for HIV+ men.
Protecting partners, gestational carriers and babies from HIV
Our Las Vegas fertility specialists are proud to partner with The Bedford Research Foundation. Its program, SPAR (Special Program of Assisted Reproduction), allows men with HIV to conceive healthy children. The first birth was in 1999 and there has never been a transmission of the virus using this technique, making it a safe and effective family-building option for HIV+ men.
SPAR research has found that the HIV viral titers (blood test) is not always a good indicator of the virus in semen. A certain percentage of men with zero viral titers in their blood will still have very low levels of virus in their semen. The SPAR technique ensures that the sperm specimens are free of the HIV virus to eliminate the risk of transmission.
Helping HIV+ men build families
Our Las Vegas fertility specialists offer advanced fertility treatments in a state-of-the art setting, allowing HIV+ individuals and couples to become parents of their very own biological children. We have helped many HIV+ men become fathers with help from this technique.
Contact us to schedule an appointment and learn more about fertility treatment for HIV+ men.