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Post Treatment Fertility For Women

Donor Eggs

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Donated eggs come from women who volunteer to go through a cycle of hormone stimulation and have their eggs collected. In the United States, donors can be known or anonymous. Some couples find their own donors on the Internet or through specialized programs at infertility clinics. Some women have a sister, cousin, or close friend who is willing to donate her eggs without payment.

Egg donors need to be screened carefully for sexually transmitted diseases and genetic illnesses. Every egg donor should also be screened by a mental health professional familiar with the egg donation process. This is just as important for donors who are friends or family members. You want to be sure that everyone agrees about what the child will or will not be told in the future. Everyone also will want to understand what the donor's relationship will be with the child, and that the donor is not pressured emotionally or financially to donate her eggs.

Any woman who has a healthy uterus and can maintain a pregnancy can have IVF with donor eggs and a partner's (or donor's) sperm. The success of the egg donation depends on the careful timing of preparing the lining of the uterus with hormone stimulation to coordinate with the growth of the donor's eggs. If the woman preparing to receive donor eggs has ovarian failure (is in permanent menopause), she must take estrogen and progesterone to prepare her uterus for the donor egg. The eggs are taken from the donor and fertilized with the sperm. Embryos are transferred to the recipient to produce pregnancy. After the transfer, the woman will continue to have hormone support until her placenta develops and can produce its own hormones.

Egg donation is the most successful treatment for infertility. The entire process of donating eggs, implanting them and fertilizing them with sperm usually takes to 6 to 8 weeks per cycle. The major health risk for the cancer survivor or the babies is the risk of having twins or triplets. Responsible programs may transfer only 1 or 2 embryos to reduce this risk, freezing extras for a future cycle. The price of a donor egg cycle includes the price of IVF plus any payment to the egg donor.

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