Egg donation is a specialized form of in vitro fertilization.
Egg donation is especially useful for women who either don’t have their own eggs due to reasons such as surgical removal of the ovaries, sterilization by chemotherapy, radiation or menopause or whose eggs are of poor quality. At our center, we have an egg donor program that has been extremely successful for many years. This is due to the extensive experience of our Director Dr. Robert Anderson and the expertise of our in Vitro Fertilization Laboratory. During the most recent two year period, Dr. Anderson has an ongoing pregnancy and live birth rate of 90%.
Egg Donor Selection
Selection of the egg donor is very important. We work with donor agencies that use very strict screening measures to insure that the potential egg donors are acceptable for our program. This screening includes a medical history of the potential egg donor and her family, physical examination and ultrasound of the ovaries by one of our doctors, infectious disease screening, drug screening and a psychological evaluation. Once the potential egg donor has passed the screening tests, they provide photographs of themselves and these and all of the screening test results are available for our patients to review to help them with their selection.
Once the egg donor has been chosen, coordination of the menstrual cycle of the donor and recipient is conducted in about two weeks. Then the recipient is given an oral form of Estrogen to prepare the lining of her uterus and the egg donor begins the stimulation of her ovaries a few days later. The stimulation process takes about two weeks until the eggs are ready to be retrieved. Once retrieved, the eggs are fertilized with the partner of the recipient’s sperm and the embryos are transferred into the recipient’s uterus on the fifth day. We transfer either one or two embryos currently. During the past two years, we have observed an embryo implantation rate of 70 % with a 65% rate of twins.
To maximize success, we require that the egg donors are less than 30 years old and most of them are between 20 and 25 years old. This insures that they have an adequate number of genetically normal eggs in their ovaries. Some couples are interested in genetic screening or gender selection of the embryos. Embryos are biopsied on the fifth day and the desired embryos are then transferred without freezing on the sixth day. Most egg donor cycles have extra embryos frozen upon completion.
For our patients who travel to Southern California for treatment from international locations, we are able to initiate treatment from their home country. We require that they arrive approximately one week prior to the egg retrieval procedure and stay at least one week after the embryo transfer. We provide concierge services for travel and lodging arrangements, transportation, dining and other amenities.