Should Soldiers be offered the opportunity to freeze sperm?

#1
We are all aware of the threat of IEDs in Afghanistan and the all too often case of soldiers suffering the loss of limbs.

What is not that well known is the genital damage suffered from blasts. This can often result in the loss/damage of both testicals.

The majority of soldiers enduring such wounds are young men without children.

Therefore should sperm freezing and storage awareness be raised during build up to deployment?

Should costs be met by the taxpayer?
 
#3
Personally i think yes to both, with the usual ethical safeguards in place ie what to do if Mrs Soldier demands use of sperm after demise of Mr Soldier, do you allow genetic screening etc etc
 

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#4
I go along with BB.
 
#5
the opportunity comes up on excercise in Norway
 
#7
Rather bizarrely I was talking to someone yesterday regarding the £10k payout for this, and the subject reared its head.

Effectively you are looking at a Bde Grp x 2 sized storage facility which would roll its product over every 12 months or so (ie donation prior to deployment and then held for 12 months except for those injured).

There are quite a few ethics involved, such as should you require donors to be already married/with a partner, how long should the samples be held post injury and up until what age etc etc.

It wouldn't be cheap initially, and there would be an awful lot of flack from the moralistic lobbies; but it is certainly an interesting concept and one that should probably be looked into, even if the MoD only treated it in the same way as deployment insurance (ie offloaded to private contractor at personal cost).
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#8
Gremlin said:
Rather bizarrely I was talking to someone yesterday regarding the £10k payout for this, and the subject reared its head.

Effectively you are looking at a Bde Grp x 2 sized storage facility which would roll its product over every 12 months or so (ie donation prior to deployment and then held for 12 months except for those injured).

There are quite a few ethics involved, such as should you require donors to be already married/with a partner, how long should the samples be held post injury and up until what age etc etc.

It wouldn't be cheap initially, and there would be an awful lot of flack from the moralistic lobbies; but it is certainly an interesting concept and one that should probably be looked into, even if the MoD only treated it in the same way as deployment insurance (ie offloaded to private contractor at personal cost).

Only if you made it compulsory. If voluntary can you see many of the 18, 19 & 20 odd year olds taking up the offer?

I can't.

More to do with their attitude toward thinking of the future at that age and the inbuilt perceived immortality of youth. So I don't think it would be on such a large scale or cost a massive amount.
 
#9
Axeman said:
Why not just rehydrate a G10 sock.
You'll notice this is NOT the NAAFI bar. Immature quips don't aid a serious subject and only serve to embarrass yourself.
 
#10
Gremlin said:
There are quite a few ethics involved, such as should you require donors to be already married/with a partner, how long should the samples be held post injury and up until what age etc etc.
There's a whole big ethical minefield to start with (scuse the pun, it wasn't intentional). As someone else pointed out, young lads think they're immortal but they are the very ones who'd get the most benefit later on if they saved sperm! How many 18 year old soldiers have met their life partner?
 
#12
bigbird67 said:
Gremlin said:
There are quite a few ethics involved, such as should you require donors to be already married/with a partner, how long should the samples be held post injury and up until what age etc etc.
There's a whole big ethical minefield to start with
I agree, but those that disagree have the option to opt out, I'd like to opt in! I'd definitely do this if the chance arose.
 

Mongo

LE
Kit Reviewer
#13
Somewhat diverging from the original intended purpose of the thread, but would issuing armoured (soft armour only, not hard!) groin protectors do any good? Decent soft armour will stop most fragments, and a way to attach it to Osprey could probably be found.

A way to not make it smack you in the balls every time you got up/ran would also need to be found, mind.
 
#14
armchair_jihad said:
Yes and it should be mandatory at basic training
I agree, good idea. If you have ever had to deal with war widows (I have) or recently bereaved parents (I haven't) then I think you can see a lot of good could come of this if it is accepted.
 
#15
Sixty said:
Only if you made it compulsory. If voluntary can you see many of the 18, 19 & 20 odd year olds taking up the offer?

I can't.

More to do with their attitude toward thinking of the future at that age and the inbuilt perceived immortality of youth. So I don't think it would be on such a large scale or cost a massive amount.
I think the flaw there, is that logistically it, the bank, would have to be set up in advance so the costs would have to reflect the potential uptake. A few, more or less, test-tubes per Brigade wouldn't really make a lot of cost difference.

IMHO it should not be publically funded, though, if soldiers wish to save for the future they should be encouraged to crack-off.....er on.
 
#16
Sixty said:
Only if you made it compulsory. If voluntary can you see many of the 18, 19 & 20 odd year olds taking up the offer?
Hence the reason to raise awareness.

Front line soldiers need to be guided by their NCOs and Officers, hence the reason they tend to have 15 units of PAX, even though they don't think it will happen to them (This knobhead only had 12, because it was never going to happen to me!)

Most soldiers happily accept PAX (or other similar policies). With education and awareness they should accept this.
 
#18
Would you need to have a purely MOD facility to store the sperm though? Could you not provide a chunk of cash per soldier so they could go to a private facility (with a contract with the MOD) and use their systems?

I agree with making it mandatory though, some 18yr old squaddie isn't going to do it otherwise. But then of course there is a massive legal minefield about it. Maybe you could educate them, but it's a long shot.
 
#19
bullet_catcher said:
armchair_jihad said:
Yes and it should be mandatory at basic training
I agree, good idea. If you have ever had to deal with war widows (I have) or recently bereaved parents (I haven't) then I think you can see a lot of good could come of this if it is accepted.
Thats another BIG issue....it's not beyond the realms of possibility for bereaved parents to push a young girlfriend/wife into having a baby from their dead son 'so we have something left of him'...guilt can be a powerful motivator!
 
#20
bullet_catcher said:
armchair_jihad said:
Yes and it should be mandatory at basic training
I agree, good idea. If you have ever had to deal with war widows (I have) or recently bereaved parents (I haven't) then I think you can see a lot of good could come of this if it is accepted.
I am not following why it should be mandatory at basic training. Will the MoD also be harvesting eggs from female soldiers?

Also I think I am missing the point in providing a frozen sperm sample to recently bereaved parents.

Dinger, I think there is value in the concept and soldiers should be encouraged and perhaps directed to suitable agencies, but I still maintain that it should be a private venture and also definitely NOT compulsory.
 

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