FAQ Ovum Donors

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT OVUM DONORS / EGG DONORS

  • Can I donate eggs even if I am on birth control?
  • Once I get selected, how long will it be before my egg retrieval?
  • Do I have to take any medication, and does it have any side effects?
  • What is the retrieval procedure, and are there any risks?
  • Where will my retrieval take place?
  • Will I have to travel, and for how long?
  • Who makes my travel arrangements?
  • Who pays my travel expenses?
  • What about daycare for my own children?
  • Can I bring my husband and/or children with me if I have to travel?
  • Do I receive any compensation?
  • Must I only make an anonymous donation?
  • How many times can I donate my eggs?

Can I donate eggs even if I am on birth control?

You can participate in our ovum donation program while on the Pill and Patch. In many instances, you are actually asked to start taking the Pill in order to regulate your cycle for the retrieval. If you are taking Depo Provera, you will need to stop this method of birth control in order to become an egg donor. Your program coordinator will instruct you as to when to stop birth control. You can even donate if you have had a tubal ligation or IUD.

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Once I get selected, how long will it be before my egg retrieval?

Each program will vary in length; it depends on the clinic where the procedure will be done. Generally it takes 3 to 4 months. A qualified Minneapolis surrogacy lawyer can help you throughout the process.

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Do I have to take any medication, and does it have any side effects?

You will be on Gonal F and Lupron for approximately six weeks.

Lupron is a synthetic hormone to help regulate your cycle and ovulation. Side effects are short term. Hot flashes may be felt when your estrogen level lowers. Occasionally, patients experience headaches as well.

Gonal-F contains only pure FSH. They affect the ovaries directly to rescue multiple follicles. Side effects may include abdominal distention/discomfort, bloating sensation, mood swings, fatigue or restlessness. In most cases, the side effects are relieved by follicular aspiration. Multiple births may occur with this medication. Ovaryan cysts may develop after ovulation, and, rarely, women develop ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS).

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What is the retrieval procedure, and are there any risks?

You will have a trans-vaginal ultrasound and blood test each morning of the last week before the retrieval in order to check your hormone levels and to check the number and size of your follicles. A small probe will be inserted into the vagina in order to see the developing eggs clearly. The day of your egg retrieval, you will be given a sedative before the egg retrieval through an intra-venous (IV) tube inserted in to the back of your hand. A trans-vaginal ultrasound probe is inserted into the vagina, and a needle guide is placed onto the probe to allow direct and accurate access to the eggs. The eggs are removed through this needle guide. Most patients find the retrieval process easily tolerable, and about 10% of patients actually fall asleep during the procedure. After the egg retrieval is completed, you will still feel drowsy and will not be able to drive for a period of 24 hours. You must stay in the city where the clinic is located for at least 24 hours following the egg retrieval. Abdominal discomfort is normal during this time.

There are several possible complications:

  • You may experience an unknown allergic reaction to one of the medications.
  • There is a small risk of a pelvic infection following the procedure. Most infections occur in women who have a previous history of pelvic infections.
  • A blood vessel could be inadvertently injured with the needle.

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Where will my retrieval take place?

The egg retrieval will take place at the clinic with which the intended parents are working.

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Will I have to travel, and for how long?

You will have to travel only if the clinic that the intended parents select is in a different city. If it is, you will have to travel to the city in which the clinic is located for a minimum of 7 days but, normally, no more than 10 days.

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Who makes my travel arrangements?

Our program coordinator will arrange all travel and hotel accommodations for your program.

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Who pays my travel expenses?

The agency pays on behalf of the intended parents all of the expenses reasonably and necessarily incurred as part of the ovum donation program.

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What about daycare for my own children?

We typically offer a daycare allowance of $40 per day for one child and $50 per day for two or more children to cover any daycare expenses that you incur at home during your trip.

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Can I bring my husband and/or children with me if I have to travel?

The program covers travel and accommodations for the donor only. Remember, children are not allowed in the clinics. Your spouse and children may, however, travel with you at your own expense.

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Do I receive any compensation?

You may request compensation in whatever amount you select. The amount of your requested compensation may, however, affect your desirability as a donor for certain intended parents. (Intended parents will naturally select an equivalent donor with a lower fee if one is available.) If you want help setting a reasonable fee, the agency will be happy to assist you. Since there are many intended parents who cannot afford to compensate a donor, we encourage any donor who is able and willing to donate for reimbursable expenses only to do so.

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Must I only make an anonymous donation?

Most ovum donation programs are completely anonymous. Occasionally, the intended parents will want to know who the donor is. You may participate in a known donor program if you want to.

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How many times can I donate my eggs?

The American Society of Reproductive Medicine recommends that any one woman donate eggs only 6 times or less. Whether you may donate as a repeat donor and how many times you may do so is determined solely by the doctor and clinic with which the intended parents are working.

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Contact an experienced St. Paul and Minneapolis surrogacy lawyer for help with your ovum donation and assisted reproduction needs.