Egg donation can be a life-altering experience for both the donor and the recipient. It is an act of generosity that will affect all involved for years to come. More and more women are choosing to donate their eggs, and it’s a path that’s becomingly increasingly popular among those who wish to grow their families. Melvin Thornton, MD of CT Fertility breaks down what’s involved in donating eggs, receiving donated eggs, and the impact felt on both ends of the process.
The Egg Donation Process
There are a number of reasons intended parents may turn to egg donation in the quest to have a child. From decreased ovarian reserve to multiple failed IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) cycles to a history of chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Thanks to IVF technology we’re able to effectively overcome these fertility challenges by creating a pregnancy using a donated egg. We even help create alternative families.
Recipients are able to review multiple donor profiles to select the one they feel is best for them. Once a donor is selected, the process begins by coordinating the donor and recipient’s cycles. Timing is important since the recipient’s uterus needs to be ready as soon as the embryo is ready for transfer. Fertility medications are taken to suppress hormones and “quiet” the recipient’s cycle. This is followed by eight to ten days of supplements to thicken the uterine lining and prepare it to receive the embryo.
Approximately nine to fourteen days post-transfer a blood pregnancy test is performed. A few weeks after pregnancy has been confirmed, the recipient will have an ultrasound to make sure the pregnancy is progressing normally.
Egg donation is a very powerful decision for many women. Providing someone with the opportunity to become a parent is an amazing and rewarding feeling. Egg donation can also help you achieve your own goals. A generous contribution to another intended parent, egg donation is also an investment in yourself. Whether it’s for college tuition or other life expenses, the compensation you receive can help you achieve your own financial goals.
Becoming an egg donor generally begins with a screening questionnaire that covers things like health history and lifestyle choices. Donors must be healthy and between the ages of 21 and 30, and are required to undergo psychological and medical screening. Once you have been accepted as an egg donor and matched with intended parents, you’ll receive hormone injections to stimulate egg production. A minor surgical procedure, with light sedation, takes place and the doctor retrieves the eggs and they go to the lab for fertilization. Once fertilized, the embryo is transferred to the intended parent’s or gestational carrier’s uterus where it will, if all goes well, develop into a bouncing bundle of joy.
Learning that donor eggs is the best option for you can be surprising, and often brings up many strong emotions. A biological connection is extremely important to many people and realizing it’s not possible can be difficult to overcome. However, many of our patients say that carrying the baby – feeling every kick and hiccup – and giving birth creates an unbreakably strong connection. Our team at CT Fertility can help guide you through this experience as you consider your options and determine your best path to parenthood.
If you’d like to learn more about egg donation and how it could benefit you either giving or on the receiving end, ,schedule an appointment at the CT Fertility clinic in Trumbull, CT or New York City. Our fertility specialists will help you fully understand your options.