posted on Dec, 19 2011 @ 12:07 PM
FDA Orders man to Stop Giving Away Sperm
Trent Arsenault, a 36 year old California man, wants to give away his sperm. He started a website called Trentdonor.org in order to reach out to
women and couples who are seeking to conceive a child. On his site he posts his medical evaluations and proof that he is free of STDs, his diet,
hobbies and physical attribute. He claims to have fathered at least 13 children, with 4 more on the way.
He charges nothing for this service, and occasionally he is intimate with his donees.
In 2010, the FDA ordered him to stop "MANUFACTURING" sperm, and cease his donation operation!
Since that time, Arsenault has been fighting the agency's efforts to shut him down -- in particular, disputing the notion that he is a
"manufacturer" of sperm, given that he packages his semen and distributes it in a cup. He has petitioned for a hearing to prove that even though he
does not have sex with his recipients, he is a sexually intimate partner to them (a term the FDA currently does not define) and therefore is exempt
from regulatory requirements that apply to manufacturers.
The real trouble for Arsenault began in 2010, when the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research inspected his home and found him in
violation of numerous regulations, including failing to properly protect himself against communicable diseases.
Traditional sperm "donation" is something of a misnomer. The act of transferring frozen sex cells to women hoping to conceive is big business in the
U.S., carried out primarily by large, commercial institutions. They recruit scores of donors and then spend months screening them for STDs and genetic
diseases in accordance with federal regulations aimed at preventing the spread of communicable diseases, before freezing their sperm with liquid
nitrogen. Sperm donors -- the majority of whom request anonymity -- are typically paid between $50 and $100 per sample.
For the women, the process can be expensive. Donor specimens at institutions like California Cryobank, one of the best-established in the industry,
run from $355 to $715 per vial, and many women require several attempts before becoming pregnant.
I can't say that I am surprised by the FDA's reaction. Of course they want to stop him, ($$$$$$) but do they have the right? I'm no doctor, and
admit my ignorance as to the pros and cons of this type of thing. I got pregnant the old fashion way.
What do you think ATS. What kind of can of worms can the FDA open? Can they really stop this kind of thing from happening? I think that the more
they try to supress this, the more "Trent Arsenaults" will unfulr their "arsenals" to give to women who are seeking sperm.