Donor Egg In-Vitro Fertilization
Donor egg IVF is now common practice in many IVF centers. It involves the use of oocytes (eggs) retrieved from properly selected healthy young donors following standard ovarian stimulation and the sperm of the recipient’s partner, with the resulting embryos transferred into a synchronized recipient’s uterus.
Egg donors may be either known or unknown (usually through an agency) to the recipient couple. In the United States, oocyte donors are paid for their services.
Today, there are many indications for donor egg IVF including:
- Ovarian failure
- Advanced age
- Diminidhed ovarian reserve / function
- Multiple prior IVF failure
- Female recipient is a carrier of a genetic disease
There is a basic evaluation that the egg donor and the recipient couple have to undergo before they are considered for donor egg IVF. If eligible, a treatment plan is selected by the physician. The specific protocol assigned takes into consideration each couples unique circumstances with the hopes of providing the best outcomes.
Generally, egg donors should be 35 years of age or younger, with normal ovarian function, and no impaired fertility. Donors will be tested for infectious diseases and screened for genetic abnormalities through a family history and through genetic blood tests as needed. Psychological screening is also required for egg donors.
The steps involved in a donor-egg IVF treatment cycle are similar to a traditional IVF cycle. Apart from the source of the eggs, donor egg IVF procedures follow the same protocol as traditional IVF cycles. Once removed from the donor, the eggs will be fertilized in the lab with either fresh sperm from the recipient’s male partner or from a sperm donor. The fertilization process and embryo growth will be monitored in the laboratory and 1 or 2 quality embryos are thereafter transfered to the recipient’s uterus 3 or 5 days after egg retrieval, depending upon the quality and quantity of the embryos.