A serodiscordant couple is defined as a couple where one partner has a communicable infectious disease such as HIV and the other does not. It can also apply to other diseases such as hepatitis C and hepatitis B.
In cases where the male partner has the disease, the main way to eliminate the risk of infection is to perform a seminal lavage. The semen is processed in the laboratory, the semen is washed and a fraction is sent to confirm by molecular biology techniques that there are no traces of infection in the sample. If this is the case, the sample, which will remain frozen, can be used safely for subsequent treatment.
If the woman is the carrier of the infection, it is important that she has an undetectable or low viral load before starting treatment. In cases with a high viral load, it is recommended that the relevant treatment be carried out before the assisted reproduction treatment, in order to reduce the presence of the virus as much as possible and thus the risk of transmission to the child. Likewise, if treatment is required during pregnancy, it must be appropriately adjusted and approved for pregnancy by the specialist who is following the patient. In this situation of adequate treatment and undetectable viral load, the risk of transmitting the infection to the foetus is very low.