Seeking Alternative Methods for Conception? Receive the Gift of a Lifetime

To say egg donors are generous is putting it mildly; they provide a selfless gift to couples who are longing to start - or complete their family. The donor egg IVF journey may come with a few challenges and a whirlwind of emotions, but educating yourself on your fertility options can help. Here, donor egg bank USA offers information for those exploring egg donation as a means of conception.

Different types of donor egg - Fresh or Frozen
For fresh donor egg, couples may choose between using a friend, family member, or an anonymous donor through an agency. A friend or family member has the benefit of being a known entity - however, couples must ensure any prospective donor passes a medical, psychological and genetic screening, just as an agency or egg bank is required to do so.

Using frozen donor eggs means the perfect egg is already waiting for a couple to bring it to life. Couples can browse profiles of donors within a national donor database to find one whose physical qualities, educational and professional background, or personal achievements fit their needs.

Timing - fresh vs frozen donor egg
Retrieving donor eggs and matching donors to a couple trying to conceive takes time - how much time depends on the type of donor egg selected.

Couples opting for fresh donor eggs must choose their donor, wait for a donor medication to stimulate egg production and maturation, then finally go through the egg retrieval. Another time-sensitive requirement to consider is cycle synchronization between donor and recipient. The donor and the prospective mother must simultaneously take medication to synchronize their menstrual cycles. After egg retrieval from the donor, the IVF cycle begins with fertilization, which allows the recipient's partner (or donor sperm) to contribute genetically. After the resulting embryos develop in the lab for three to five days, one or two are transferred to the prospective mother. Overall, it can take up to a year to secure the donor and successfully complete the fresh donor egg cycle.

With frozen donor egg, however, many steps in the process are already complete. Once the couple selects their perfect donor, they can begin the IVF cycle at a time that fits their schedule. The prospective mother does not need to sync her cycle to the donor's, although she must still take medication to thicken the lining of her uterus for embryo implantation. Couples can complete a frozen donor egg IVF cycle in as few as four weeks.

Quell your donor egg IVF uncertainty
As with any reproductive technology, there are always uncertainties - the most common being 'will this procedure work?' While fresh donor egg IVF has marginally higher success rates, top-notch fertility clinics assure us that between fresh and frozen donor eggs, pregnancy rates are nearly comparable.

Many couples considering frozen donor egg appreciate knowing in advance exactly how many eggs are present in each 'lot' of eggs. With fresh donor egg, it is impossible to know how the donor will respond to her medication; she could produce a dozen or, unfortunately just a few.

Another uncertainty with fresh donor eggs is whether the donor could change her mind about donating. Cancellations are uncommon, but they can be devastating to couples who have waited at length for their chosen donor to become available.

Vitrification - an advanced cryopreservation technique for frozen donor egg
One consideration that applies only to frozen donor egg is vitrification or cryopreservation of the eggs. This advanced technology enables frozen eggs to achieve more viable eggs - and thus, better results - than the slow freeze technology that used to be standard practice. Unfortunately, slow-freezing allowed ice crystals to form inside the egg cells, damaging the egg's cellular structure. With the advent of vitrification, however, this new technique of cryopreservation freezes the egg so quickly that ice cannot develop at all. Choosing vitrified donor eggs - and ensuring your clinic is experienced with thawing vitrified eggs - is one key to improving the likelihood of pregnancy with frozen donor egg IVF.

Financial considerations - Fresh vs Frozen donor eggs
The investment for IVF with a frozen donor egg is about half of using a fresh donor egg. In either case, prospective parents make a worthwhile investment in their future family.

Achieving the pregnancy of your dreams
In the end, the most compelling reason to choose donor egg is so the prospective mother can have the chance to nurture her baby from within, to fully experience her own pregnancy, and to be the one delivering her baby into the world. For a family dreaming of that day, knowing your options is the best way to make those dreams come true.

- collaborative post

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