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    Sperm quality and motility (MOT)

    Donor sperm must be of good quality to give the best precondition for a pregnancy. At Cryos you can choose between several different sperm qualities, also called motilities or MOTs.

    Maybe you have noticed that you can filter between sperm straws with specific ‘motilities’ in the Donor Search. At Cryos, you have the option to order donor sperm with the exact motility (MOT) needed for your treatment. The choice depends on the type of treatment as well as your fertility clinic’s preference. In the following, you can read about sperm quality, what influences the quality and which motility to order for your treatment.


    Cryos laboratory technician assessing the quality of a donor sperm sample through a microscope

    How to measure sperm quality?

    Our sperm donors need a very good sperm quality to be accepted at Cryos and therefore, the donor candidates go through several tests before being accepted as donors. 

    There are several ways to measure sperm quality. When we receive a sample in our laboratory, we look at the concentration of sperm cells in a sample and the sperm cells’ ability to move. To ensure excellent sperm quality, we measure these parameters on a sample after freezing and thawing as sperm may react differently to freezing. The sperm quality is measured by using an automatic system called CASA (Computer Assisted Sperm Analysis), which ensures a very precise result.

    What influences sperm quality?

    A man’s sperm quality may vary over time and is influenced by many different factors. Lifestyle choices are some of the important factors. Things such as alcohol, smoking, and unhealthy food can influence the sperm quality negatively.

    Another important factor that can affect the sperm quality is exposure of the testicles to heat. In order to improve the sperm quality, a man should therefore avoid saunas, hot tubs, solarium and tight underwear.

    Hear Professor Allan Pacey explain what defines good sperm quality:

    What is motility or MOT?

    Motility, also called MOT, is one of the parameters that helps us measure the quality of the sperm. MOT is the amount of active sperm cells pr. milliliter sperm. This means that MOT20 sperm contains at least 20 million active sperm cells per milliliter sperm. 

    Most of Cryos’ sperm straws contain 0.5 milliliter sperm. Therefore, if you buy a MOT20 sperm straw, you will get at least 10 million active sperm cells after thawing. Some straws contain 0.4 milliliter sperm and are offered with a 20 % discount.

    At Cryos, you can order sperm straws with MOT5, MOT10, MOT20 and MOT30+. This gives you the possibility of choosing the exact quality needed for your fertility treatment. 

    Which MOT should I choose for my fertility treatment?

    The type of sperm straw you should order depends on the type of fertility treatment and your fertility clinic’s preference. Please consult your clinic regarding the MOT. However, we do have some general recommendations when choosing MOT.

    If you are having an IUI treatment, we recommend using 1 MOT10 IUI straw per treatment. You can also use a sperm straw with a higher or a lower MOT.

    If you are having IVF or ICSI treatment, we recommend using 1 MOT5 IUI straw. However, sperm straws with higher MOT can also be used for the purpose.

    If you are having an ICI treatment we recommend using 2 ICI MOT10 or 2 ICI MOT20 straw or higher per treatment. IUI straws can also be used.

    Read more about ICI and IUI straws here or how much donor sperm to order here.