Egg Donation Program
The world’s first baby conceved through egg donation by Monash IVF was born in 1982.
The first baby in Georgia was born in 2004 by Zhordania Institute by our team.
Today there are thousands of women who, for many different reasons need donated eggs in order to conceive. The donation is an anonymous procedure in which the donor provides oocytes to the receiving couple. Donated eggs from volunteers are fertilized with sperm from the recipients partner. After fertilization, the resulting embryos are transferred to the receiving patient following gestation.
Hence, egg donation is the option for the following groups of women. Those whose own eggs loose the capacity to produce the essential oocytes for conception. In this group there are women with:
1) premature ovarian failure: Women born without or with under-developed ovaries.(e.g. Turner’s Syndrome).
2) those suffering from premature menopauseMost women go through the menopause in their mid to late 40’s or early 50’s. After the menopause a woman is no longer capable of conceiving because her ovaries stop producing eggs and sex hormones. This, however, occurs much earlier to some women, even in their teens or early twenties, before they would even have contemplated starting a family. This condition is called premature ovarian failure or premature menopause.
3) ovarian damage following surgery, radiation or chemotherapy
There is also another group of women, those with active ovaries, but need donated eggs because
1) carry an inheritable genetic disorder such as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy or haemophilia. These diseases can be passed on to their offspring. Rather than risk giving birth to a child who might suffer greatly and die at an early age, some women choose to have a chance of an unaffected child by egg donation.
2) they repeatedly fail to respond to ovarian stimulation in an IVF programme Some women persistently produce poor quality eggs or embryos when stimulated. These ladies may improve their overall pregnancy chances with egg donation.
3) their own eggs repeatedly fail to fertilise in an IVF programme or their own embryos repeatedly fail to implant
4) they have a history of recurrent miscarriage
We run a range of programmes designed to meet the needs of women in both groups, following the recommendations of the effective legislation. In any case we are working to provide recipients with a matched donor through the highest standars of medical care and treatments. Notably, unlike other programs, we do not advertise, recruit or solicit Egg Donors. All of the Donors in our program have located us as a result of their own diligence and research. You therefore can be assured that these woman are mature, thoughtful and have considered all the ramifications involved.
Steps for becoming an egg donor
If you are considering becoming a donor, and are a healthy, accomplished, and attractive young woman between the ages of 18 and 32, we hope you will consider our program.
The very first but equally important step is that you spend time reading about the egg donation process provided on this website. This is because after receiving information and counselling, donors are requested to give their consent to Egg Donation. It is important to note that they are free to modify or even withdraw their consent at any time until the embryos are transferred to the recipient.
When you are accepted into our program, we will be meeting with you to explain the procedure in greater detail, but here are a few key points that you will want to be aware of:
- The duration of the cycle is about three weeks.
- You will be required to have several blood tests during the cycle. You will have a genetic screening and be tested for AIDS and other transmittable diseases. Your partner (if any) will need to be tested for AIDS and Hepatitis.
- You will be required to have several visits to the reproductive specialist during your cycle. Some of these visits will be on weekends or early in the morning. The reproductive physician will perform several vaginal ultrasounds, which are painless.
- You will be taking fertility hormones in the form of injections for about three weeks. The procedure does not impact your own fertility. The doctors will be removing eggs which you would be losing that month anyway.
- The retrieval itself takes 30 minutes. There are no incisions, and you are in a light sleep the entire time.
- The side effects are mild, temporary, and may include bloating, cramping, mood swings and possibly spotting.
Once you have been accepted the next step is to complete a very detailed application, which initiates our screening process and serves as your introduction to the prospective parents. Once a couple has selected you as their anonymous donor, “In Vitro” will contact you to schedule some appointments for the following tests and evaluations:
Consultation with our lawyer
Medical evaluation including a pelvic ultrasound
Consult with the clinical coordinator (she will explain your role as an ovum donor in the program and give you medical instructions to be followed)
Blood draw to test for hepatitis, HIV, sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s), and hormone levels
Signing the agreement between Donor & Prospective Parents.
Then we deal with your ovaries. These will then be stimulated to grow the eggs. You will learn to give yourself daily injections of hormones for 2-3 weeks. Your schedule will need to be flexible to accommodate the many appointments you will be required to have to monitor your response to the hormones. The monitoring will include blood draws and ultrasound examinations. The fertility drugs you will be taking will cause you to produce several eggs and when they are mature enough, a retrieval procedure that extracts the eggs from the ovaries is scheduled at the clinic.
The egg retrieval will occur about 36 hours after the injection of HCG. Egg retrievals are usually scheduled early in the morning. The method by which the eggs are retrieved at Embio is an ultrasound directed needle aspiration. This is a procedure, performed under anesthesia, such that you will be totally comfortable and pain-free. The ultrasound probe with a needle guide is placed in the vagina, which allows an aspiration needle to be inserted through the upper portion of the vagina directly into the ovary. The ultrasound image allows the physician to accurately guide the needle into each follicle for aspiration or “suction”. As the fluid is aspirated, the egg is released and collected in the laboratory.
The retrieval process takes approximately 15-30 minutes. Following the retrieval you are asked to remain at the clinic for one to two hours to recover from the anesthesia. You must plan on having someone available to drive you home as you have been under the effects of anesthesia and cannot (by law) drive yourself home or take public transportation
Once the eggs are retrieved, the embryologists will begin the process of fertilization (the union of the sperm and egg). The prospective mother will undergo an embryo transfer three to five days later, after the embryos have developed in the laboratory. We will find out the outcome about two weeks after the transfer and you may call in to find out the results of your efforts.
We realize the enormity of your gift and are dedicated to making the experience as personal and safe as possible, with a wonderful reproductive specialist. That is why, here in “In Vitro”clinic we only operate in accordance with national regulations which apply in IVF and Egg Donation programmes.