Third-party reproduction: What to expect at an FDA physical
The FDA physical is an exam done in accordance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements for anyone providing any tissue, eggs or sperm that may be transferred to another person’s body. The FDA physical is necessary for both male and female patients undergoing IVF, as well as for egg donors, sperm donors and gestational carriers. The goal is for our Las Vegas fertility center to collect information about infectious diseases and confirm that any transfer of tissues is safe.
What is the purpose of an FDA physical?
Sometimes, bringing a baby into the world requires help from additional people. For example, a couple may receive eggs donated by another woman, or a same-sex male couple may use both an egg donor and a gestational carrier. In these and similar cases, we are taking tissue or gametes (eggs and/or sperm) from two people and placing the embryo into a different person.
Using third-party reproductive tissue is similar to giving or receiving an organ transplant, as it does carry a risk of transmission of infectious diseases. This is why the FDA has a number of special requirements to prevent the spread of infections in the treatment process.
The FDA physical appointment happens soon before providing sperm or eggs because there are specific timelines that are required for each type of donation. At this visit, you will receive a thorough physical exam and undergo bloodwork to confirm that you do not have any undiagnosed infectious diseases that could be passed through your tissue.
A physician at our Las Vegas fertility center will perform a thorough review of your skin, mouth, heart, lungs, abdomen and pelvis, including a speculum exam to view the vagina and cervix, or a penile and testicular exam. We will ask you about any piercings, tattoos and surgeries, as these can increase the risk of undiagnosed blood or fluid-borne infections.
Who will perform my FDA physical?
One of our FCLV physicians will perform the exam, with assistance from the medical team.
Are there any side effects associated with this visit?
There are minimal side effects from this visit, and the exam is typically painless. Plan to be well-hydrated before you arrive, as you will have a blood draw.
What are the next steps?
Any abnormal results will be addressed, but typically after the FDA physical exam, you will proceed with your treatment as scheduled.
To learn more about what to expect at an FDA physical at our Las Vegas fertility center, contact us.