What are the advantages of using frozen donated eggs?
Substantially lower cost
High success rates
No wait to be matched with a donor
Recipient controls the donor selection process
Elimination of the potential ethical and financial burdens of maintaining unused embryos
What are the requirements to become a recipient?
A physician consult, screening bloodwork and cultures, pap smear, mammogram (>40 yrs), flexible sigmoidoscopy (>50 yrs), medical clearance letter (>45 yrs), uterine evaluation, sounding (trial embryo transfer), psychological consult. The male partner will also need screening bloodwork and a semen analysis.
What is the time frame involved for a cycle?
Once a match has been made, a traditional lfresh donor cycle takes approximately six weeks (from first injection to the pregnancy test). Frozen donor cycles through the Reproductive Biology Egg Bank take about four weeks to complete.
Can my OB/GYN do some of my initial testing so insurance will cover?
Yes, an order can be written for your OB/GYN to perform some of the screening.
What is the percentage of success with each treatment cycle?
Registered data with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) since 2002 show a typical delivery rate per embryo transfer >60%. The one exception to this was in 2005, where the delivery rate was 50%. Cumulative data for the Reproductive Biology Egg Bank for 2008, 2009, and 2010 show pregnancy rates (delivered and ongoing) of 68%. Egg freezing is so new that the CDC and SART do not have separate accounts for these pregnancies. Since the opening of our frozen egg program in 2006, over 300 cycles have been completed with an ongoing/delivered pregnancy rate of approximately 65%.
Can I use a donor from outside your bank/clinic?
We encourage the use of our egg donors, as we are aware of the screening they have done and have personally approved them for our program. If you do choose an agency donor, we can coordinate with the donor agency for the cycle. Agency donors must pass our screening requirements. Use of an agency donor generally adds $8,000-$15,000 in additional expense as a result of the agency’s fees. Our costs, however, remain the same.
Can I see a photo of the donor?
We do not show adult photos of our egg donors. Our promise to protect donor identity allows us to recruit a large number of highly qualified donors. We do publish baby photograph of our donors on the egg bank data base.
What information is given to me about the donor?
You will receive a copy of the donor’s profile, family medical history, and genetics report.
How can I assess the personality of my donor?
Every donor who is approved and listed on the web site has gone through a full battery of psychological tests. Like any human being, the donors will have good days and bad days when they interact with the medical staff for the egg bank. We are not in a position to make a full assessment of the donor’s personality beyond that which we can read in the psychology report. Be assured, however, that all of the donors are screened very carefully and that donors at risk for any kind of psychological problem are excluded prior to treatment. On a less formal note, the donors should all be considered highly motivated, energetic young women who are acting in part for altruistic reasons.
How many donor choices should I submit?
In the end, of course, you will be asked to select only one donor. There may be some situations in which we recommend that you identify a backup donor of your choice. When trying to narrow down your selection the egg bank team is happy to offer input regarding the donors. However, we ask that you limit the number of donors that you submit for us to help you consider to three. We also ask that you read the PDF files on each of the donors carefully before submitting your questions. What is published on the web site is the full extent of non-identifying information that we have available. There are no hidden pieces of information that the donor staff would be able to offer above and beyond that which is already published for registered patients.
How do you find your donors/how do you recruit/advertise?
We advertise for egg donors at colleges and universities, local publications, and on the radio. A large number of donors are referred by their friends who have previously donated here at RBA.
Are all your donors college-educated?
No, but we have a strong preference for educated donors. Our donors who have not graduated from college generally have some other highly desirable trait(s) to make them candidates for our program. We review each egg donor’s personal background/history thoroughly before accepting them into our program.
How does the matching process work?
With fresh egg donoation cycles, the donor coordinators and physicians try to find and offer the closest possible match to what the recipient desires in her donor.
The Reproductive Biology Egg Bank website contains a data base of information about all of our available egg donors. Recipients will have the opportunity to review the available donors and forward their selection choices to the donor coordinators.
Can I exercise while going through treatment?
Exercise is not contraindicated during your recipient cycle; however, once the embryo transfer is performed, you will want to only perform low-impact exercise until your pregnancy test.
What are the side effects of the medications I will be taking?
Some of the possible side effects of the cycle medications include headaches, hot flashes, minimal weight gain, water retention, and mood swings.
Can I travel during treatment?
Once your recipient cycle begins, it is important to be available for any needed appointments. Your nurse, prior to your cycle, can assist you in planning for these appointments.
Can I see my physician at one of your satellite offices?
The satellite offices are staffed by certain physicians, and not all of our physicians rotate to each of these offices.
Who do I call with questions?
During the matching process, you may contact the egg donor program administrative assistant with any questions. She will pull your chart and one of the egg donor coordinators will call you back. Once you have begun your cycle, you may contact your primary physician’s administrative assistant, and one of your nurses will return your call.
When can we have intercourse after ET and if I am pregnant?
After your transfer, we ask that you refrain from intercourse until your pregnancy test, approximately 10-12 days later. If you are pregnant, as long as you are not experiencing bleeding or discomfort, intercourse is not contraindicated.
Can I fly on a plane after my ET?
Air travel should be fine following the embryo transfer. It is extremely important to have your blood pregnancy test drawn at the appropriate time following the transfer.
If I am pregnant, is it normal to lightly spot or have some abdominal cramping?
Spotting (dark red or brown) can be quite normal early in pregnancy. However, if you experience bright red bleeding, that soaks a pad an hour, immediately get off your feet and call our office.
Intermittent mild cramping and slight twinges on either side may also be normal. If cramping is moderate to severe, and not relieved by Tylenol, this may not be normal and should notify our office.
When will I be able to tell if I am pregnant?
Pregnancy testing is scheduled 10-12 days after the embryo transfer, depending on the stage of the embryos at transfer.
How long will I stay with the practice once I am pregnant?
Typically you will not be discharged to your OB/GYN until 8-10 weeks of pregnancy. You will have several blood tests and ultrasounds to determine appropriate growth of the pregnancy before you are released.
Do I need to divulge to anyone that I used donated eggs?
Pursuing donor eggs as a treatment option is a very personal decision. It is patient preference to share this information with others. We do recommend sharing this information with your OB/GYN, as he/she will be continuing your care once you are discharged from our practice.
Current data from psychological journals on this subject suggest disclosing this information to the child at the appropriate time in the future.
Can I be a recipient if I have had my fallopian tubes removed or am menopausal?
Is it necessary when being matched with a donor to have a blood type match?
No, unless you are planning on not disclosing the information to your child.
Can I go to my pharmacy to purchase my cycle medications?
Yes, you may use your regular pharmacy to purchase your medications for your recipient cycle. However, some of the medications may need to be pre-ordered, as some pharmacies may not keep some of the medications in stock.