Donor Egg In Vitro Fertilization
Donor egg in vitro fertilization (IVF) is a wonderful option for women who cannot use their own eggs in an IVF cycle . Thousands of successful donor egg cycles have been conducted throughout the world, and there is no increase in birth defects or other fetal abnormalities with this pregnancy method.
Egg donors can be either known or unknown to the patient and are usually aged in their twenties or early thirties. A known donor can be a friend or relative, while unknown donors are those anonymously chosen from the UAB donor egg pool.
Patients undergoing donor egg IVF are administered medications to synchronize their cycle with that of the donor’s. This is because once the donor embryos are ready for transfer, the patient’s body must be ready to accept them and support the pregnancy.
The donor undergoes ovulation induction with injectable gonadotropins
until her eggs mature and are ready for retrieval (Learn more about this process »).
After retrieval, the donor eggs are combined with the patient’s partner’s sperm and placed in incubators for three days.
Once mature, the embryos are transferred to the patient’s uterus. The number of embryos transferred is patient-specific and depends upon many variables. Additional embryos can be cryopreserved (frozen) for use in future cycles. Prior to embryo implantation, the patient will have received hormones, such as progesterone and estrogen, to mimic the “normal pregnancy process.”
IVF success rates using donor eggs are high and reflect the age of the donor. If a patient receives eggs donated from a 22 year old, the success rates will equal her age category.