Treatment of LGBTQ Patients

Our fertility clinic may be the only infertility clinic in Hawaii that will treat gay and lesbian patients with ovulation induction, intrauterine insemination, donor sperm, or IVF.

According to the census figures, 38 percent of American children are being raised outside of the traditional two-parent family — either in single-parent homes, stepfamilies, grandparent-headed households, foster families, or by same-sex parents. The physicians at the Fertility Institute of Hawaii are experienced at providing IVF, gestational surrogacy and egg donation treatments to people in same-sex relationships.

Some same sex couples may feel marginalized by the healthcare system and perhaps even more so with respect to the unfamiliar territory of assisted reproductive technologies. Our approach to all patients is to provide sensitivity, patience and kindness in word and deed.

Gay Couples

As the number of gay couples with a desire to achieve biological parenthood grows, there has been a growing demand for IVF (in vitro fertilization) pregnancy. Through the services of egg, or sperm donors, ovulation induction of egg donors, and gestational carriers, it is now common to utilize IVF to maximize chance of succeed. Please see the In Vitro Fertilization section of our website for more details.

Gay couples require the services of an egg donor who provides the eggs as well as a gestational carrier (surrogate) who carries the pregnancy. The eggs can be fertilized with the sperm of one or both partners.

In gestational surrogacy, a female egg donor provides the egg(s), the male partner provides the sperm and In Vitro Fertilization is done to create their embryos. The embryos are then transferred into the surrogate’s uterus. The resulting baby is genetically unrelated to the surrogate.

Lesbian Couples

We invite new patients to bring their partners for the initial consultation and examination in order to establish an environment of respect and trust. For women, a vaginal ultrasound is also performed at this time which helps the patient to understand female anatomy and how treatments will be performed.

The basic assessment we perform for our female patients can be completed in one menstrual cycle. Ovarian function and reserve is checked on the third or fourth cycle day with a simple blood panel (FSH, Estradiol, Prolactin and TSH.) We may also advise a hysterosalpingoram (HSG), an x-ray study to check the uterine anatomy and any tubal problems that may prevent the egg/embryo from reaching the uterus.

At this time, we also discuss the different types of inseminations and how the sperm donor selection should be made. Semen obtained from reputable sperm banks has undergone rigorous screening for sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and a health risk questionnaire is completed by the donor and reviewed by trained personnel. The semen is frozen and quarantined for six months and the donor is then re-tested for STDs. If he is not infected, the semen samples are made available for artificial insemination (AI).

About 25 percent of lesbian couples we treat have undertaken home inseminations without success. A word of caution: Some patients prefer using the semen of a personal friend or acquaintance. This practice is strongly discouraged unless the individual has undergone rigorous screening. Not doing so may have grave, even deadly consequences, especially if the donor is from a high-risk behavior group.

Artificial Insemination with donor sperm: Donor sperm is obtained from various sperm donor banks. Once a sample is chosen, it is shipped to our laboratory and stored in our Honolulu cryobank on site. A fertility evaluation as well as ovulation therapy (if needed) is combined with intrauterine insemination.

Co-In Vitro Fertilization. When one of the lesbian partners wishes to provide the eggs and the other is interested in carrying the pregnancy, Co-IVF is performed. The eggs are harvested from one partner, fertilized with donor sperm and the resulting embryos placed in the uterus of the other partner. Please see the In Vitro Fertilization section of our website for more details.

Donor Sperm Banks

While we are unable to guarantee the quality of any sperm received from sperm banks, the list below represents some of the sperm banks with which we have worked successfully in the past.