Beside the ova also sperms are needed for a conception in the IVF therapy, which in Germany only sperms from the husband or steady partner are possible. According the law for embryo protection foreign spermatozoa or donated spermatozoa may not be used for artificial conception.


Before examination of semen the man should not have any sexual intercourse for 3-5 days. The sperms will be gained through masturbation and examine under the microscope. Hereby, the spermiogram will show which therapy should be decided on.


Quality of spermatozoa

Three parameters plays a role by judging the seminal quality:

  • Concentration of the spermatozoa
  • Motility
  • Morphology (i.e. the form)

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has defined limit values for a normal seminal quality:

  • Concentration:>20 million/ml
  • Motility:>50 percent
  • Morphology:>30 percent of normal formed sperms
gutes Speriomgramm

sperm with good quality



schlechtes Speriomgramm

sperm with poor quality


A slightly lower value of one or several of these figures does not mean that a man is infertil. In these cases he is distinguished as "limited virility". This only means that it might take longer before a pregnancy occur with the female partner. The more worse the seminal quality in comparison to the limit values is, the more unlikely it becomes that (with a healthy female partner) a spontaneous pregnancy will enter.



By the preparation the fastest and most mobile sperms are isolated through three different procedures and the spermatozoa is replaced by a nutrient medium. Often the swim-up method is used. The most motile sperm swims active into the nutrient liquid.

Methodde des Swim-Up

swim-up technique



Further to