Egg donation has helped many families struggling with conception to achieve parenthood. The use of donor eggs involves retrieving eggs from someone other than the intended parent, fertilizing the egg in a laboratory, and the resulting embryo is transferred into the recipient’s uterus through in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
Who can benefit from the use of donor eggs?
- Someone with absent or poorly functioning ovaries caused by premature menopause or diminished ovarian reserve
- Someone who has experienced repeated failed IVF cycles
- Someone who is of advanced reproductive age
- Someone who has undergone cancer treatments or other treatments affecting egg quality
- Male couples who wish to parent
- Single men who wish to parent
Donor Eggs: Fresh vs. Frozen
There are two options available to you when considering using a donor’s eggs: fresh or frozen.
Fresh Egg Donor Cycle
- Eggs come from a donor selected from an agency or a known donor and you receive all retrieved eggs from that treatment cycle.
- Eggs are fertilized with sperm immediately after retrieval to create fresh embryos that will be transferred to the recipient.
Frozen Egg Donor Cycle
- Frozen eggs are typically available in batches (cohorts) of 6 to 8 from an anonymous donor. Multiple cohorts might be required to reach your famaily building goals, and more than one cohort can often be purchased from the same donor.
- Frozen eggs are thawed and inseminated with sperm to create fresh embryos that will be transferred to the recipient.
Additionally, you may choose to use an anonymous or known donor for both fresh or frozen donor egg options. Using an anonymous donation requires working with an agency to select your egg donor, while known donors can be a friend or relative.