Embryo / Egg / Sperm Donation
Donation of eggs, sperm, and embryos can help a couple to get pregnant if either or both partners have fertility issues. Although the identity of the donor remains anonymous, his/her medical history and physical characteristics is made available to the fertility expert to ensure good phenotype matching with the recipient couple.
Egg or ovum donation is the process in which the eggs from a healthy woman are fertilized by the sperm from a patient’s husband. The resultant embryos are then transferred to the patient’s uterus. This process allows an infertile woman to carry a baby to term.
Selection of a donor is the first step of the process. All donors have to go through several medical screening tests. An ovary stimulation regimen is used to trigger multiple egg production. The eggs are then retrieved, fertilized and the embryos cultured.
Who is it for?
• Older women with reduced quantity and/or quality of eggs.
• Women with reproductive problems such as ovarian failure.
• Poor response to previous IVF treatments.
• Women with genetic diseases (so that they don’t pass them on to their child)
Embryo Adoption (or Donor Embryo Transfer)
Couples that wish to opt for a donor egg and donor sperm for medical reasons go through embryo donation or embryo adoption.
With embryo adoption, a healthy donor’s eggs are fertilized with donor sperm and one or two of resultant embryos are placed in the woman’s womb. This method has a high pregnancy rate with little to no complications. However, counseling is very important so that the couple understands that their child will not be genetically related to them but it will be their biological child. Counselling ensures that the couple is mentally prepared for this form of treatment.
When sperm cannot be retrieved from the man even through a surgical procedure, a couple can opt for sperm that has been donated. Donor sperm can be used to inseminate the woman through IUI (Intrauterine insemination) or to fertilize her eggs through the IVF process.
Donor sperm samples can be obtained from established and registered sperm banks. These sperm samples are from fertile donors that have been screened for viral infections and common genetic disorders.