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Sperm: How long do they live after ejaculation?

Medically reviewed on May 2, 2018

The life span of sperm after ejaculation depends on the circumstances.

Ejaculated sperm remain viable for several days within a woman's reproductive tract or in nutritive liquid (culture medium) in a lab setting. Fertilization is possible as long as the sperm remain alive — at least five days.

Sperm also can be preserved for years when semen is frozen.

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