Egg Donor FAQs

Video Overview

 

 

Egg Donor FAQs

How do I apply?

The first step in becoming an egg donor is to fill out our initial online application by clicking on the button above labeled “CLICK TO APPLY”. If you meet the basic requirements of our program, you will be asked to fill out our full application. This will include three generations of family medical and personal history. If your application is approved by our Clinical Geneticist, you will be contacted to schedule an initial interview. At this time, we will educate you on all aspects of participation and answer any questions you may have about our program.

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Why am I required to live within two hours of your Fairfax, VA or Towson, MD monitoring sites?

During the course of a donation cycle, you will be required to come in for approximately 6-8 appointments to monitor your progress during the donation cycle. These monitoring appointments will take approximately 30 minutes.

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What do monitoring appointments involve?

When you are in for a morning monitoring appointment, we will first draw your blood to assess your hormone levels. Following the blood draw, we will evaluate your ovaries using an ultrasound. This ultrasound will show us how your follicles are growing and help us evaluate what dosage of medication to give you that evening. We may have you come in after 3 or 4 nights of medication toward the beginning of the cycle but nearing the end we will plan on you being in every day or every other day. The donation cycle usually lasts for 10-14 days and we will give you an approximate calendar to follow. You will be called or emailed every day you are in for monitoring to be given the dosage of medication to take that night as well as to confirm your next appointment.

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Is the program confidential?

Your anonymity is very important to us. All donor information is completely confidential. Online applications are submitted directly to the egg donor coordinator, and we do not share your information with outside parties. Donor files are numerically coded to assure confidentiality. Access to files is restricted. Your identity will not be revealed to any recipient, nor shall the identity of any recipient be disclosed to you.

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What do the medical tests involve?

You will be required to have a physical and pelvic exam, infectious disease testing, genetic screening including a chromosome analysis and DNA testing for Cystic Fibrosis and Fragile X, a psychological evaluation including a psychological health history and an evaluation of your comfort level with the donor egg program. The genetic and infectious disease testing is very extensive and implements the most advanced technology available today. All appointments will be arranged for you or performed on site at our facility.

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How am I compensated for donations?

Due to the dedication, time and effort required by participation in the donor egg program, you will be adequately compensated for each donation cycle you complete. Donors receive $200 upon completion of the initial medical screening tests, an additional $300 upon acceptance into the program, and up to $8,000 at the conclusion of each completed egg donation cycle. We encourage you to donate multiple times, but will always be in close contact with you after each cycle to inquire about your interest in helping another recipient build their family.

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What are the risks involved?

As with any medical procedure, there are risks involved. (You will need to discuss the potential risks with a clinician) The following risks are ones that you should consider:

Pregnancy: It is possible that not all of the eggs will be retrieved and therefore, donors are at a high risk for pregnancy for a period of time after the egg retrieval. We ask that donors practice abstinence during this time. Donors should always use protection if having intercourse at any time during participation.

Infection: The risk of infection from egg retrieval is less than 1%. To lower the risk of possible infection even further, donors will be instructed to take an antibiotic for several days following the retrieval.

Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndome (OHSS): Occasionally excess fluid from the ovaries will transfer into the abdominal cavity causing moderate to severe bloating. If a significant amount of fluid is present, it will be removed in a procedure very similar to the egg retrieval and IV fluids are given in replacement. In mild to moderate cases of OHSS, the fluid is slowly reabsorbed over the course of several days. Approximately 1-3% of women will experience significant OHSS. In order to reduce this risk, donors may be given different medications or a change in protocol to help eliminate or significantly decrease the risk of donors having OHSS.

Ovarian Torsion: Very rarely the ovary can twist on itself causing a sudden onset of severe pain on one side. The risk of ovarian torsion is less than 1%. For a period of time, donors are asked to discontinue activities such as running, moderate to high impact aerobic activity, horseback riding and strenuous lifting to further decrease this risk.

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What are the side effects of the medications?

Lupron: headaches, nausea, moodiness, hot flashes

FSH: bloating, moodiness, cramping, aching, PMS-like symptoms

hCG: Breast tenderness, nausea

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Will this have any effect on my own fertility?

On average, at puberty, a woman will have an ovarian reserve of approximately 400,000 eggs. Of which, only 400 will ever mature and be released during her lifetime. The remainder of the eggs will die and never be used. During a controlled stimulation, some of those eggs that would normally die will be recruited to mature instead. Egg donation does not appear to increase the risk of premature menopause.

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Can I continue to use a form of contraception during my participation?

The only forms of contraception that we do not allow during your participation as an egg donor are Depo Provera, an IUD or Implanon. You can continue to use birth control pills, the Patch or Nuva Ring. If you have had a tubal ligation, you are still eligible to participate.

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How long will it take for me to be matched with a recipient patient?

On average it will take 2-4 weeks for a donor to be selected for a cycle, but this timeframe may vary. If you have questions, please feel free to contact a member of our Donor Egg Team.

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What are the legalities of egg donation?

You assume no responsibility or liability for any child conceived by your donation. Likewise, you will have no rights to any child conceived by your donation.

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Why do people become donors?

For most donors it is a combination of the knowledge that you are helping an infertile couple to have a family and the financial compensation that we provide for your time and efforts. The service you can provide as an egg donor is truly significant and greatly appreciated. You can be assured that we will value your commitment to our program and be responsive to your needs. We ask that you please consider becoming an anonymous egg donor and help an infertile couple experience the joy and fulfillment of parenthood. We are committed to the inception of healthy babies and appreciate your consideration in making such a vital contribution to the lives of infertile couples.

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