Gender Selection: Sperm Sorting vs. PGD By Sonja Kristiansen, MD on July 12, 2018

A blastocystPatients may consider gender selection for a number of reasons. For example, some parents may already have one or more children of the same gender and prefer to have a child of the opposite sex. In other instances, families may have cultural reasons for choosing a certain gender for their offspring.

No matter what the reason, sex selection is now a very real option for families who are trying to conceive. Today, our Houston, TX fertility team will discuss sperm sorting vs. PGS so patients can be well-informed of their options.

Sperm Sorting

Sperm sorting is a gender selection method that has been widely used for over three decades. How does it work?

A centrifuge is used to spin the sperm sample, which contains both X and Y sperm. In fact, each sample typically contains about 50 percent of each kind.

Because these sperm types have different densities (the X sperm are denser), they are separated into layers when spun. Before this process begins, the sperm cells are separated from the seminal fluid, and abnormal or immotile sperm are filtered out. Once the sample is ready, it will be separated in the centrifuge, and only the sperm containing the desired chromosome will be collected. Finally, the sample will be transferred to the woman’s uterus via intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Cost of Sperm Sorting

Of course, the fees for sperm sorting will vary based on numerous factors. On average, however, the costs range from $1,300 to $2,500 per cycle.

Availability of Sperm Sorting

Sperm sorting is widely used. In fact, it was already an extremely common procedure as early as the 1970s.

PGS (Preimplantation Genetic Screening)

PGS is used in conjunction with IVF. Because the embryos are tested in a laboratory, this process can determine the sex of your child before the embryo is transferred to the uterus.

First, eggs are harvested from the female and a sperm sample is taken from the male. Next, the eggs are fertilized by the sperm in a lab, and the embryos develop over the next few days. On the fifth day, the embryo's chromosomes are analyzed.

PGD (Preimplantation genetic diagnosis)  is typically performed for those with a family history of genetic disorders, as this process can reduce the risk of having a baby with these types of complications.  PGD can also determine gender as many disorders are gender linked.

Cost of PGS/PGD

While PGS is certainly the most effective and predictable method of gender selection, it is more expensive compared to sperm sorting. An IVF and PGs cycle costs about $13,000 and PGD can cost $15,000 to $20,000.

Availability of PGS/PGD

During a consultation at our practice, Dr. Sonja B. Kristiansen can let you know if PGS/PGD is right for you.

Contact Us for More Information

If you are curious about gender selection and would like to learn more, schedule a consultation at the Houston Fertility Center. Contact us online or give us a call at (713) 225-5375.

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Dr. Sonja Kristiansen

Houston Fertility Center

Dr. Sonja Kristiansen is the founder and Medical Director of Houston Fertility Center. She is a board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologist Infertility (REI) specialist who is proud to help hopeful parents fulfill their dreams of having children. Our center is affiliated with the:

  • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
  • American Society for Reproductive Medicine
  • Texas Medical Association

We provide convenient care for patients from greater Houston and visitors from out of town. For more information about our services, contact our office online or call (713) 225-5375 today.

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