Undergoing treatment with the assistance of an egg donor can help an individual or couple achieve their dream of creating a family. There are many reasons why some individuals and couples require an egg donor. At Newlife IVF, we regularly facilitate known egg donor arrangements with confidence and experience.
There are a number of reasons why an egg donor can help a person or couple to have a baby. Egg donors are regularly accessed by single women, same-sex female couples, single men, same-sex male couples, and heterosexual couples.
Factors affecting a woman’s ability to use her own eggs may include:
A woman may be unable to produce her own eggs due to her age, her hormone levels or early menopause. It may also occur as a result of cancer treatment, as chemotherapy and radiotherapy can cause permanent damage to the ovaries.
Egg quality is one of the most important factors affecting IVF outcomes. Egg quality naturally declines with age, so older women may require donor eggs in order to achieve a successful pregnancy. Sub-optimal egg quality can also contribute to recurrent miscarriages or can result in a couple or individual undergoing several IVF cycles without achieving their desired outcome.
Some women carry a genetic disorder that they do not wish to pass on to their children. If there is potential for this to occur, genetic testing of embryos is often sufficient in order to screen for and prevent inheritance of the disorder. However, in the event that genetic testing is not suitable, the help of an egg donor can be an appropriate alternative.
Men also require the help of an egg donor to build their family, with the added assistance of a woman who is willing to act as a surrogate.
If you feel comfortable sharing your fertility experiences with family and friends, it is possible to let your social networks know that you are looking for an egg donor. You may also consider online forums.
You may also choose to advertise in print publications. However, you must gain an approval from the Minister of Health prior to advertising.
For more information, read this information sheet on Exploring Egg Donor Options.
Once you have connected with a person who is considering donating their eggs, please contact your fertility specialist who can assist in arranging the necessary screening tests and treatment plans for both yourself and your potential egg donor. You will also be required to attend an individual counselling session and then a group counselling session with your potential donor.
Egg donors must meet the following eligibility:
The above list is not exhaustive. For more information on eligibility and becoming a donor, visit the VARTA website.
For more information on the process involved, read this information sheet on known egg donor arrangements.
Once all the required steps have been completed and you are ready to start treatment, your egg donor will commence an IVF-stimulated cycle. This cycle aims to stimulate the donor’s ovaries with the intention of producing and retrieving several mature eggs – a process known as egg collection. The procedure involves light sedation and occurs in our purpose-built day procedures hospital in Box Hill.
The collected eggs are then fertilised with sperm and the resulting embryo/s are placed in an incubator in our lab to develop and grow. Following these steps, the embryo will then be transferred into your uterus (or the surrogate’s uterus, in the case of single men or same-sex male couples). This can be done either as a fresh embryo transfer within the same cycle or as a frozen embryo transfer down the track. Hopefully, the transferred embryo will implant in the wall of the uterus and lead to a successful pregnancy.
For more information on IVF, read how the IVF process works.
Our donor and surrogacy team are available to assist with any queries or questions you have about egg donation. For further information, please email [email protected].
The Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority (VARTA) also provides very helpful resources regarding egg donation.
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