Fertility Answers - Helping Build Families

Donor Egg

Couples can find family building success with donor egg

Our Louisiana fertility specialists often recommend donor egg, or oocyte donation, for couples when the female partner is a poor responder to ovulation induction medications, has evidence of diminished ovarian reserve, or is the carrier of a genetic condition. For some infertile couples, donor egg represents the only real chance for parenthood and the ability to experience the entire pregnancy process from conception to delivery.

In general, the egg donation process is very similar to in vitro fertilization. The major difference is that the egg donor undergoes the ovulation induction and egg retrieval, while the egg recipient undergoes simultaneous preparation of her uterus for embryo implantation.

Before treatment with donor egg begins, all parties involved are required by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) to undergo medical, psychological, and legal counseling. Donors undergo a rigorous pre-screening process for genetic, psychological and physical health abnormalities, and sexually transmitted diseases. Only those women who have passed the complete screening process including preliminary ultrasound and hormonal fertility screening become candidates to be egg donors for a prospective recipient couple.

Oocyte donors can either be known to the intended parents or anonymous.

Sometimes patients have a person in mind who will serve as an egg donor, for example, a younger sister or friend. Even though this person is known to the recipient couple, she must be screened as any other donor would be and demonstrate she will provide a good chance for a successful pregnancy.

With an anonymous egg donation, our Louisiana fertility specialists will help you select an appropriate donor or will help you select frozen oocytes from a donor egg bank.

Egg donation can also be either fresh or frozen.

In a fresh donor egg cycle, the donor will take medications to stimulate her ovaries so that multiple eggs can be retrieved. These eggs will then be fertilized with the intended parent’s sperm and eventually transferred to the recipient’s uterus for implantation. An advantage of fresh egg donation is that more eggs can be retrieved from the donor with the possibility of more embryos available in case the first transfer is not successful or in case you want more children from the same donor. Another advantage is that there is a slightly better chance of pregnancy compared to frozen egg donation.

If you wish to proceed with a fresh donor egg cycle, our Louisiana fertility specialists can direct you to an out-of-state clinic who will help you select a suitable egg donor. The cost of egg donation varies according to the clinic and to the specific package of services you require. If the recipient chooses to be monitored by Fertility Answers during the cycle, a fee schedule will be provided.

The disadvantages for fresh egg donation are the increased cost and inconvenience to travel to the out of state location.

For a frozen egg donation, our Louisiana fertility specialists work with different egg banks who have already retrieved eggs from donors and cryopreserved or frozen these eggs to use in a donor egg cycle. The eggs are sent from the bank to our lab, thawed and fertilized with the intended parent’s sperm and the embryo is transferred to the recipient.

A major advantage of choosing frozen donor egg is that the intended parents do not have to travel out of state. All procedures can be done in either of Fertility Answers’s clinics in Lafayette or Baton Rouge. Additionally, with frozen donor egg intended parents have a larger group of donors to choose from (compared to fresh egg donors) and the cost is less expensive than fresh egg donation.

We will help you along all steps of the donor process

If you wish to proceed with a frozen donor egg cycle, our Louisiana fertility specialists will help you decide on an egg bank that is right for you. The cost for frozen egg donation varies between the different egg banks and with the different options you choose. Fertility Answers will provide a fee schedule for monitoring of the recipient and the charges associated with fertilization, embryo culture and embryo transfer.

The process begins with the patient selecting their ideal egg donor from one of the donor databases of high-quality donors. The patient will then use a semen sample collection kit to ship sperm to Ovation Fertility’s state-of-the-art lab. Their embryologists will use the sample to fertilize the donor eggs and perform genetic testing to test for chromosomal abnormalities. The lab will freeze the healthy embryos using the industry-leading vitrification techniques and then ship the embryos to Fertility Answers for embryo transfer.

Find peace of mind using donor egg with our highly trained embryologists

Patients can rest assured that while the donor egg process can be intimidating, our staff is highly trained to take care of your needs. All of our embryologists are verified by many donor egg banks, such as Fairfax Egg Bank, World Egg Bank, Asian Egg Bank, and Ovation Donor Services, to ensure the eggs are handled and thawed according to each banks’ protocol.

Some egg banks offer a guarantee for a euploid, or chromosomally normal, embryo derived from their donor eggs. With this guarantee, you don’t have to worry about the chromosomal normality of the embryo that will be transferred. This guarantee offers a more time and cost effective path to parenthood because you have a better chance of having a baby with just one IVF cycle.