Before you decide to become an egg donor, at your first appointment, the egg donation process will be explained to you in detail. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. We will provide you with an application, if you have not filled one out already. You can take the application home, and return it to us when you have made your decision.
Our egg donation program is anonymous, meaning you will not be given any identifying information about the recipients, nor will the recipients receive identifying information about you. Also, you will not meet each other.
It is also possible for you to donate to someone you know, such as a sibling, family member, or a friend. In that case, we can assist you in coordinating the necessary tests, appointments, legal contract, and medical visits.
EGG BANKING + EGG FREEZING + EGG DONOR CYCLE
In a collaborative effort with our affiliated clinic Reproductive Fertility Center and a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization In Vitro Foundation, we are offering a program to young women who wish to freeze their eggs but cannot afford the expenses associated with an egg freezing cycle. While making a positive change in someone else's life, our donors will be offered a free egg freezing cycle. For a limited time, we are offering two exclusive programs you can choose from:
1. One IVF cycle - Freeze half of your eggs for free when you donate the other half to our frozen egg bank. An egg freezing cycle costs approximately $10,000 from beginning to end, including IVF, medication, infectious disease testing, genetic screening, cryopreservation, and yearly storage fees. If you decide to freeze your eggs, you can get all the services plus one year of storage for free when you donate half of the eggs retrieved to our frozen egg bank. This cycle will not only benefit the egg donor, but it will benefit intended parent(s)/recipient(s) as well. The costs associated with a donor-egg IVF cycle is often a large burden on recipient(s), and many find it hard to be able to afford them. The frozen eggs will help these couples minimize the costs and keep fertility treatments affordable for everyone, not just for the minority. If you are interested in this program, you must apply and qualify as an egg donor first and confirm your choice of program prior to proceeding, as you will not be able to change your mind in the middle of a cycle. Please consult with our coordinators for program details.
2. Donate one cycle. Get the next egg freezing cycle for free - If you were to donate to our recipient(s) and have a successful and smooth cycle, you can get the next egg freezing cycle for free! Our donor compensations are about $10,000. Getting the egg freezing cycle is another $10,000 worth of services and medication. If you are interested in participating in this program, you must apply and qualify as an egg donor first, and confirm your choice of program prior to starting any cycle. You will not be able to change your mind in the middle of a cycle. Please consult with our coordinator for program details.
THE 5 STEPS OF EGG DONATION
The process of egg donation can generally be divided into five steps:
Step (1) APPLICATION: If you are interested in becoming an egg donor, you will be asked to complete a questionnaire of health history and health habits, an application, and provide photos of yourself. Since we are an anonymous program, pictures from early or late childhood, or professional portraits are preferred.
Step (2) SCREENS: Preliminary drug and infectious disease screening - Blood tests and urine tests for infectious diseases are required by the FDA. You will first go through preliminary tests, and once the results qualify, you will do the second set of screens. These tests typically include tests for HIV, Hepatitis, STD, and recreational drugs. Tests are performed at the fertility clinic.
Step (3) MATCHING, PSYCH & LEGAL: Upon acceptance to the program, you will be added to our pool of donors. Once you have been chosen and matched with a couple, you will meet with a licensed psychologist. She is there to make sure you are psychologically prepared for the process, and to provide advise and support. After the psychologist has determined that you are suitable egg donor, you will sign a contract, which explains your rights and responsibilities, as well as the recipient's rights and responsibilities to protect both parties. Typically the contract spells out the financial agreement.
Step (4) MEDICAL PROCESS: As soon as the contract is signed, you will be ready to begin. You will first learn how to give yourself subcutaneous injections with a small needle shorter than 1/2 inches. Most donors have expressed that the shots are relatively easy and "much less painful" than they had imagined. The shots are typically administered at an area where there is a thick layer of fat. You will be given a calendar with medication laid out for you so you can coordinate it with your schedule. We have four locations throughout Los Angeles and Orange County, making it easiest for you. During the last 8 to 10 days of your cycle, you will need ultrasound and blood work to be closely monitored. Usually you may need 2-3 appointments during that short period of time. Egg donation will not impair your fertility in the future, since the retrieved eggs are the ones your body will naturally dispose of that month. Also, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine has stated that it is safe for an egg donor to donate 6 times in their lifetime.
Step (5) RETRIEVAL: Once your follicles are ready, you will undergo egg retrieval. Egg retrieval takes about 15 to 20 minutes, and it will be done by a Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility specialist doctor, and with IV sedation by an Anesthesiologist doctor, in the physician's office. You will need a trusted person such as a friend or family member to take you home after the procedure. You will receive your compensation on the day of the retrieval or at your follow up doctor's appointment following the retrieval. As long as you have followed the doctor's instructions for egg donation correctly, and have completed the egg retrieval successfully,, you will be entitled to the compensation for your time spent and effort to donate your eggs.
NO EXPENSES/FEES FOR DONORS OR SURROGATES: You will not be financially responsible for any appointments or exams. Typically, there is no additional compensation for travel expenses, child care, or any related expenses incurred during the egg donation or surrogacy process. The compensation is inclusive of all expenses and compensation, unless otherwise agreed. Surrogacy compensation is very different from egg donation. Please refer to surrogacy section for details.
SUPPORTIVE TEAM: Our coordinator has been in this field for more than 15 years. She will be available to provide support and guidance at every step, throughout the entire process.
PRIVACY AND DISCLOSURE: We generally do not provide egg donors with the outcomes of their egg donation cycle. Our donors have to consent to being notified of any medical information about themselves that is discovered during the donation process. For example, if one of your infectious disease screening test results comes back positive, we reserve the right to inform you.
All medical procedures carry risks and side effects. We highly recommend all our donors and surrogates obtain as much information from independent sources as possible, and to consult their own physicians to ask any questions to their satisfaction before commiting to donate. For more details on egg donation and surrogacy, please consult www.asrm.org or refer to literature available at our office.