Why Egg Donation?
Egg Donation is a treatment option for women who cannot conceive with their own eggs. The eggs donated by younger women are fertilised with the patient’s partner’s sperm and transferred in an appropriately prepared womb of the recipient. The patients or candidates for egg donation are women with
- Premature Ovarian failure
- Iatrogenic ovarian failure due to surgery or radiation
- Resistant ovary syndrome
- Carriers of recessive autosomal disorders
- Poor ovarian reserve
- Women > 42 yrs as chance of becoming pregnant with own egg are very less.
- Poor egg quality or multiple failed IVF attempts.
How do you go about Egg Donation?
The important steps in the egg donation program include
1. Egg donor screening and selection
The egg donors are selected from a pool of egg donors available with the egg donor agency. They are generally in the age of 21-31 yrs with preferably having at least a child and as stipulated by the draft guidelines of ICMR the procedure is a confidential and anonymous process. The identity of the donor and recipient is kept confidential and not revealed to each other at any point of treatment or later. However, we make every effort to select and match the donor profile according to the recipient.
The process involves a comprehensive physical and psychological evaluation of the donors, as it is important that they understand the whole treatment and also understand that they will have no right on the child conceived through their eggs.
A detailed medical history is obtained and the patient is tested for infections, ultrasound evaluation is done for evaluation of ovarian reserve and hormonal status of the donor is also tested.
2. Synchronisation of Donor’s and recipient Cycle
The next step is the synchronisation of the cycle so as to simultaneously prepare the uterus of the recipient for the embryo transfer along with the donor’s egg. This is done by first programming the cycle of both women using birth control pills which is given for 2- 3 weeks and stopped simultaneously so that they start menstruating around the same time.
3. Ovarian stimulation of donor and endometrial preparation
The donor undergoes stimulation (as mentioned above) and recipient’s uterine lining is prepared using Estradiol tablets to achieve an optimal lining of 8 mm or more.
4. Egg retrieval and fertilisation
The egg retrieval and fertilisation steps remain the same as in standard IVF cycle, and on the same day of egg retrieval we start progesterone (either vaginal tablets or daily injections ) to induce the final changes in the lining of the recipient and prepare it for implantation, the embryos are transferred back in the recipient’s uterus.
The pregnancy test is due 2 weeks after the embryo transfer. This is one of the most successful ART treatments with up to 60% success rates and 40-45% pregnancy rates.