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Though each Fertility Specialist has their own specific routine that they follow, there are some basic steps that are generally the same with each egg donation process, including;
Day 1 (start of cycle): The Egg Donor undergoes a ssessment of ovaries and has blood tests to check hormone levels. Fertility drug treatment is administered in sync with the donor's usual menstrual cycle.
Day 5: Progesterone therapy is initiated in the egg recipient to prepare the uterus for implantation of the fertilized egg.
Day 11: Egg donor is again assessed, including the use of ultrasound, the given an additional fertility drugs to stimulate follicle development.
Day 17-19: Several ultrasounds are performed to assess the status of the ovaries and follicles development until it's determined that the patient is ready for retrieval, also called "harvest."
Day 21: If the follicles are large enough, the egg donor gets shots of hormones, to ready the eggs to be harvested.
Day 22 : The egg recipient receives a shot of progesterone, another fertility hormone, to further prepare her uterus for the soon-to-be implanted eggs.
Day 23: Eggs are harvested from the egg donor, using a long needle, guided by ultrasound. The eggs are placed into a test tube or petri dish and fertilized.
Day 26-28: The recipient will receive between 2 and 4 embryos depending on age and quality of embryo, via implantation into her prepared uterus. Any remaining viable embryos will be frozen, if the first cycle does in a pregnancy.
As you can see, there are specific steps that must be taken, in a prescribed manner, in order to synchronize both the egg donor and the egg recipient, to ensure successful development, harvest, and transfer of donor eggs.
As with any medical procedure, there are risks and potential complications. Since egg donation involves not only medication, but also a surgical procedure, it is important to understand the potential risks, prior to making the decision about egg donation.
Some of the risks and complications of egg donation, include:
Whether you are the donor or the recipient of donated eggs, fertility drugs are necessary. The fertility drugs used for egg donors include:
As with any medications, fertility drugs can have side effects. The most common side effects associated with fertility hormones are those comparable to pre-menstrual snydrome, i.e. mood changes, irritability, achiness, fatigue, and emotional sensitivity.
If you are considering becoming an egg donor, it is important to find an reputable Fertility Clinic or Egg Donation Center, which will assist you with the process.
Keep these specific items in mind, when considering an Egg Donation Center:
Infertility is the primary impetus for using egg donations since there are several conditions that contribute to infertility, which involve egg production and maturation.
Laws are different in each state, and in each country, related to donating eggs, including anonymity of donors, use of surrogates and the ability of children conceived with donor eggs to contact the donors upon reaching maturity. For example:
Making the decision to become an egg donor is a big one, just as being a donor for other body organs or parts. If you do decide to become an egg donor, there is a process that you will go through. To become an egg donor, you will need to:
Talk to a Fertility Specialist, Fertility Clinic or Gynecologist about egg donation, to see if being an egg donor is right for you.
When more conservative measures fail to effectively treat infertility in women, including the use of fertility drugs, intrauterine insemination and rarely intra-fallopian insemination, many couples or single women may turn to in vitro fertilization.
This process involves harvesting an egg from an ovary and fertilizing it in a petri dish or test tube, then transfering it into the uterus. For women who have undergone early menopause, have no ovaries or have other medical conditions which may make egg production, or use of their own eggs, impossible, egg donation becomes the next viable option to achieve donor embryo pregnancy.
Since the use of donated eggs precludes natural conception, as the eggs cannot be transfered prior to fertilization, in vitro fertilization must be used to achieve union of the egg and sperm. The process for egg donation is specific for both the egg donor and the recipient, and involves health and psychological screening, blood testing according to the FDA, use of fertility medications, and then surgical procedures to retrieve or "harvest" the eggs, and the transfer into the receiving woman's uterus, following fertilization.
The entire process can take several weeks, including assessment and fertility drug treatment, though the actual implantation takes less than an hour. Talk to your Fertility Specialist to see if egg donation for in vitro fertilization is the right choice to help you achieve your parenthood goals.
Sometimes, a woman is unable to produce eggs or utilize her eggs in order to become pregnant. This may be because of early menopause, hormonal imbalances that cannot be corrected, or they have failed IVF using their own eggs. When this is the case, egg donation is a viable option to assist them in achieving pregnancy.
Egg donation can be expensive. It can also be an emotional experience, and it has a variable success rate, however the pregnancy rate is better than that normally achieved using In Vitro Fertilization and the woman's own eggs, which is approximately 35 percent.
The donated egg recipient goes through a specific process for the egg donation, including: