The Complete Guide to the Egg Donation Process for First-Time Donors

Hatch Fertility
June 27, 2019

In recent years there have been significant advances made in reproductive endocrinology. Fertility clinics around the country are more innovative than ever, and new technology is being used in creative ways to build families. One of these ways is through egg donation and IVF. 

The egg donation process

Keep reading to learn all you need to know about how the egg donation process works.

Application and Screening

Before anything can happen, both the egg donor and intended parents must complete an application. Egg donors apply through an egg donation program, while intended parents fill out a recipient application. The application process gathers necessary information for all parties.

After an egg donor submits an application, there is an initial screening process that every donor must complete.

Don’t get discouraged if the admissions process takes a while. It can often take 1 to 2 months to complete the entire screening process. This includes fertility screening, medical screening, genetic screening, and psychological screening.

Once an egg donor passes the screening process, her profile to be added to the database.

Making a Matching

After a couple submits their application, they will have access to the donor database. Only intended parents who have created a login will be able to view the donors. These secure databases are set up to protect the donor’s privacy.

Once the intended parents have found a donor they are interested in, the agency will contact the donor and move forward with the process. The IVF coordinator will need to confirm her availability and set up a timeline that works for both the donor and recipient.

Some donors are chosen right away, while others can wait months until a match is made. Intended parents will have a particular list of traits and characteristics they are looking for in a donor. It may take time for a couple to find the right fit.

Legal Agreements

In a perfect world, we wouldn’t need to worry about legal agreements, but just to keep everyone protected and all on the same page, legal contracts must be signed before any clinical work starts.

Legal agreements include details regarding compensation, timelines, parental rights, and insurance coverage. These are all critical topics to discuss. If there are any expectations in how the egg donation process will be handled, this is the time to address them.

Egg Retrieval Process

The egg retrieval process is the most challenging time for the egg donor. But, don’t worry, it only lasts about 2 weeks, it is generally painless, and all expenses are covered.

The IVF clinic will put together a timeline that includes the dates of the appointments and the instructions for your medications. This timeline will be centered around the donor’s menstrual cycle. If needed, birth control may be started, so the starting date will be more accurate.

Ovarian Stimulation

The first round of medication is ovarian stimulation. During a woman’s natural cycle, she usually only has one mature egg. The daily injections will stimulate her ovaries to encourage more than one egg to mature for retrieval.

The egg donor is observed during this time through blood tests and ultrasounds.

Triggering Ovulation and Egg Retrieval

When the ultrasound shows the donor’s eggs have developed, the donor will be instructed to trigger ovulation with a new medication. Two days later, the eggs are retrieved during a short in-office procedure.

This procedure is done under I.V. sedation and only takes about 20 minutes. While it is generally pain-free, the donor will be required to take the rest of the day to recover.

What’s Next for Egg Donors? 

After the eggs have been retrieved, the intended parents will continue on their journey by either fertilizing the egg and transferring the embryo to a surrogate or freezing the embryos until they are ready.

The egg donor will have a follow-up appointment to make sure she is healing and recovering from the ovarian stimulation and retrieval. If she handled the process well, she may be asked if she would be interested in donating again. The goal is to make the egg donor feel safe and respected throughout the entire process.

Thinking About Becoming an Egg Donor?

The egg donation process is a fantastic journey that touches everyone involved.  It is now possible for families to have the children they desire through the generous act of beautiful donors donating eggs.

If you are interested in being apart of this process, don’t hesitate to contact us. We are here to help you every step of the way.

Apply To Be an Egg Donor

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