Egg Donor and Donor Egg IVF in Houston, Texas
WHEN DO I NEED AN EGG DONOR OR UNDERGO DONOR EGG IVF?
Many women who hope to carry children are in need of help conceiving through the use of donor eggs. If you’re over the age of 40 or have poor egg quality or ovarian reserve, early menopause, genetic disorders, hormone imbalances or if your ovaries have not responded well to IVF stimulation in the past, using donor eggs may be a great option for you. While the preference for most women will be to use their own eggs, using donor eggs may help a woman become pregnant when it is not otherwise possible or the IVF success rates are very low with her own eggs. One of the biggest advantages of using and egg donor is that you do not need to undergo the oocyte retrieval process which is part of In Vitro Fertilization process. You will still receive an embryo transfer and get to experience the joy of being pregnant and delivering your baby.
DO WE GET TO CHOOSE OUR EGG DONOR?
Yes! There are several ways to choose an egg donor and you will be assisted by your fertility specialist and IVF nurse through the egg donation process. Traditional egg donation involved selecting an egg donor from an agency (anonymous) or choosing a friend or family member (known donor) to donate eggs. Potential egg donors or donor candidates all undergo rigorous FDA medical history screening, blood tests for hormone levels and infectious diseases, psychological screening and genetic testing for single gene disorders (carrier screen) or chromosome disorders. Agencies require an extensive egg donor application for screening and so they can provide complete donor profiles for your review. This will allow you to make an informed choice about the egg donor, their personality, appearance, talents and interests. The strict screening process for donors ensures all donors are of a high quality. Intended parents (patients desiring pregnancy) must also have a legal agreement with the agency or donor to clarify all expectations of the process prior to starting. After these steps are completed, the egg donation cycle (In Vitro Fertilization) can be started.
More recently, many intended parents will use egg donors from an egg bank. Using an egg bank has several advantages such as ease of selection and shorter time to starting the In Vitro Fertilization and embryo transfer process. Typically, when selecting an egg donor from an egg bank, the medical and psychological screening process, as well as the genetic testing, egg retrieval, and egg donation process has already been completed. Intended parents only have to select the egg donor they prefer from the egg bank profiles and request the eggs (egg lot or cohort) be sent to the In Vitro Fertilization Laboratory an Inovi Fertility & Genetics Institute. Typically, the donated eggs provided by an egg bank come as an egg lot or cohort that includes 6-8 eggs. Many egg banks will offer a guarantee of a minimum number of embryos for embryo transfer from each egg lot or cohort.
HOW ARE DONOR EGGS USED FOR IVF?
Once you decide to pursue IVF using donor eggs preparations will be made for In Vitro Fertilization. When the eggs are retrieved from your donor or they arrive from the egg bank, they will be injected with your male partner’s sperm (or donor sperm if you requested it) in our lab, fertilizing the donated eggs directly. The resulting fertilized eggs, now embryos, will mature for 5-6 days before the highest quality one(s) are chosen for embryo transfer to your uterus. If the procedure is successful, the embryo will implant in your uterus naturally and a blood test 10 days later will confirm pregnancy.
WHAT IS THE SUCCESS RATE OF USING DONOR EGGS FOR IVF?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), donor eggs used for IVF offer the highest rate of successful pregnancies when compared to non-donor eggs. This is likely due to the intense pre-screening of donors prior to egg donation cycle.