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Despite popular misconceptions, infertility is just as common in men as it is in women. About 1 in 11 men are infertile and the only way to know your fertility is to get tested.
Yet, most men will not test at all.
One reason is the fact that testing in a regular clinic is both expensive and unbearably awkward. On the other hand, most at-home, mail-in fertility tests might not be as accurate because sperm deteriorates quickly outside the body.
In this article, we will suggest an option to avoid the awkward waiting and the used magazines in the clinic while still getting an accurate fertility assessment thanks to Fellow Fertility.
It is the only delayed mail-in semen analysis that’s scientifically proven to have the same accuracy as testing a fresh sample in a conventional clinic.
TL; DR: What is Fellow Fertility?
Fellow Fertility offers an at-home, mail-in semen analysis kit and cryopreservation services for healthy sperm at affordable prices.
The accuracy of their testing is the highest amongst at-home fertility kits, and it’s comparable to the quality provided by a conventional in-person clinic.
Their option for sperm banking also allows you to ensure the protection of your fertility for as long as you need.
The process includes the following 5 steps:
- Purchase your kit online (sperm storage is optional)
- Provide a sample and mail it back
- Get your report in a day and a half
- Get 3 cryopreserved vials if you purchased sperm storage
- Pick the moment when your vials will be shipped securely to your in-vitro fertilization (IVF) clinic
Pros and Cons of Fellow Fertility
Fellow Fertility Health
In regular clinics, you have to produce the sample there so that it can be tested within 1 hour of ejaculation. That’s because sperm dies quickly when outside the body.
On the other hand, Fellow Fertility offers is an easy, convenient and cost-effective option to deposit your sample in the comfort of your home and still get the most accurate results.
According to the study performed by Fellow Fertility and published in a peer-reviewed journal, the delayed sperm testing they offer is just as accurate as the one in a regular fertility clinic. 
Furthermore, there is a cryopreservation option, which allows you to conserve healthy sperm for the future, in case you are not ready to be a parent yet.
In addition to your test results, Fellow Fertility also offers lifestyle advice based on scientific studies that may improve your sperm health and overall well-being that includes tips on diet, exercise, sleep, and beyond.
Male Factor Infertility
Nearly 1 in 7 US couples is infertile.
In one-third of the cases, the problem is in the woman, in another one-third, it is in the man, and in the last one-third, there is an issue in both partners.
The most common reasons for male infertility include low sperm concentration, poor sperm motility, or abnormalities in sperm morphology.
The issues with your semen might occur due to low sperm production, infections, injuries, chronic conditions, lifestyle choices, environmental factors, and many more.
Sperm health is assessed via 3 main indicators – concentration, motility, and morphology. These are the factors that affect the chance for enough viable sperm to travel all the way to the egg and fertilize it.
Your sperm concentration should be at least 15 million swimmers per 1ml of semen. Normal semen volume is between 1.5 and 5.5 ml.
Not every sperm can have normal morphology or motility. Your body is making 1500 per second so mistakes happen. It’s normal to have at least 40% motile and 4% normally shaped sperm cells.
How Does Fellow Fertility Work?
Fellow Fertility can offer you accurate fertility assessment and reliable sperm storage in 4 simple steps:
- Purchase the kit online
- Deposit the semen sample
- Drop the kit off to your local UPS and mail it back
- Get an email with your results in 1.5 days (and storage if purchased)
The kit contains a container for your sample, a vial of preservation solution, instructions booklet, temperature sensor, and gel pack. The box of the kit itself will already have the return shipping label attached to it.
The preservation solution and the gel pack with temperature sensor are part of Fellow Fertility’s Stabilization Technology which ensures the survival of your semen back to the lab.
The preservative extends the life of your swimmers while the gel pack provides optimal temperature.
The preservation solution has an expiration date. If this date has passed and you didn’t use the kit yet, Fellow Fertility offers to send a new vial of preservation solution when you are ready to use it.
The gel pack and the temperature sensor are stored behind the sample container and they must not be touched or interacted with.
Fellow Fertility also uses an algorithm that models the rate of sperm degradation and thus your sperm metrics are calculated as if the sample was produced in a clinic.
At-Home Fertility Test
The at-home, mail-in semen analysis kit is perfect for anyone who’d like to learn more about their fertility. It is also suitable for post-vasectomy patients who seek to verify the success of the procedure.
Make sure to produce your semen sample after abstaining from ejaculation between 2 and 5 days.
When producing the sample, you should avoid using lube, saliva, or lotions due to the risk of contamination. Also, most lubes contain spermicides.
Do not test your semen if you have had a fever in the last week because your results won’t be accurate.
Protected Health Information
The kit arrives in a discreet box which can also be shipped back without any concerns. Fellow stores your results independently from your personal identifying information.
Thus, they are delivered to the lab and then to you securely. The staff that’s processing your sample doesn’t have access to your name or any identifying information either.
Unless you have purchased storage, the sample will be destroyed immediately after testing and it will never be sold, saved, or used for insemination.
Unlike other at-home fertility test providers which partner with a lab, Fellow Fertility has their own CLIA approved lab to perform your semen analysis.
This way they can ensure that every test is done to the highest quality standards and you get the most accurate results possible.
CLIA stands for “Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments”. Being CLIA-certified means that the Federal government approves that the lab meets all quality regulations and the results can be used by doctors as a part of the diagnostic process.
Furthermore, your results are approved by a physician before they reach you. The process from mailing back your sample to receiving back a complete semen analysis takes up to 1.5 days.
The analysis includes the following indicators:
- Semen Volume – should be 1.5-5.5 ml (up to 7.5 according to some guidelines)
- Sperm Concentration – should be 15 – 260 mill sperm per ml.
- Total Sperm Count – should be 40 – 930 mill sperm
- Sperm Motility – should be 40% – 81% motile sperm
- Total Motile Sperm Count – should be at least 10 mill sperm
- Sperm Morphology – should be 4% – 48% normal shaped
Semen Analysis Cost
The total cost of the semen analysis by Fellow Fertility is $189, including free shipping and sperm morphology.
Currently, Fellow Fertility is self-pay only but if you have an HSA or FSA account you might be able to seek reimbursement so make sure to check with your plan.
Fellow Fertility offers cryopreservation services for your semen in their own CLIA-certified lab. They will store 3 vials of your semen which means you will have 3 attempts for IVF.
You can also receive a free consultation with their team if you’d like to store more.
Your semen will be frozen at -320 ˚F which ensures its survival for decades. Theoretically, it will be viable for up to 200 years.
Fellow Fertility guarantees reliability and accuracy similar to in-person clinics because they meet the same rigorous quality standards.
Furthermore, your sample is tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STIs) before freezing in order to comply with the requirement of IVF clinics.
If your sample is not STI tested, there is no guarantee that the clinic will use it.
You can cancel your storage subscription at any time.
Why Store Sperm?
Sperm cryopreservation guarantees that you will be able to have children in the years to come.
Even if your semen is not completely healthy and contains only a few motile sperms, it can be used in procedures such as ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection) which can lead to successful egg fertilization.
Besides, paternal age over 40 increases the risk of birth defects, genetic syndromes, and premature birth. Saving younger sperm for the future will increase the likelihood of having healthier children.
Who Should Store Sperm?
All men can benefit from sperm storage, considering the rising rates of infertility with every generation. Thus, sperm banking is a form of insurance.
Furthermore, semen cryopreservation is an especially good idea for people who:
- Received such a recommendation from their doctor
- Postpone parenthood after their 40s
- Will undergo any form of cancer treatment
- Perform high-risk jobs
- Will undergo surgery, including urological procedures or gender confirmation
Sperm Storage Cost
The price for sperm storage by Fellow Fertility is $140 per year. The STI test is included in the price for 1 year of storage.
Once you decide to take your sample out of cryopreservation and use it, there will be a one-time extraction fee and a shipping cost for moving the sample from the sperm bank to your IVF clinic.
How to Buy Fellow Fertility
You can purchase Fellow Fertility only from the official website.
There, you can pick whether you want only a mail-in semen analysis or testing plus one year of cryopreservation.
Fellow Fertility Reviews
Overall, customers have given Fellow Fertility a rating of 4.73 stars!
Here are some top reviews provided by anonymous responders:
“So great to do this in the privacy of your own home. No scheduling appointments or going to any strange place.”
-Just curious about fertility
“This was my first time trying fertility testing, and the process couldn’t have been easier or more straightforward. I’d happily recommend Fellow to anyone looking into male fertility testing.”
“The test was easy to use and my results were the same as when I had it done at a fertility clinic years ago, so I know the accuracy is spot on. With my results came suggestions on how to improve my spent health. I felt it was more thorough than the fertility clinics I have been to.”
-Just curious about my fertility, planning to have children in the future
Is Fellow Fertility Right for Me?
Fellow Fertility appears to be one of the most affordable, convenient, and accurate options to test your fertility. It is recommended by doctors across the country for its quality and reliability.
Besides, you can store your semen sample in a state-of-the-art cryopreservation lab, which guarantees your sperm will be viable and usable when you need it.
Want to learn about other options for male fertility testing? Check out our review on Dadi Kit!