The Ultimate Guide to Becoming an Egg Donor in 2024: Everything You Need to Know
Egg donation is a generous, often life-changing decision. There are many factors to consider before becoming an egg donor in 2024. This article offers an in-depth guide on everything you need to know to understand the egg donation process from A to Z.
How Donors are Selected
Reputable sources for egg donors, such as MyEggBank®, comply with donor requirement standards set by credible institutions such as the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).
The Application Process
The first step in becoming an egg donor is to submit a donor application. You will be asked to provide some basic qualifying information, such as your:
- Age (you must be between 21 and 31 years old)
- Height and weight (you must meet the requirement for a healthy height and weight ratio, called BMI)
- Education level (education beyond high school is strongly preferred)
- Type of birth control used (some types of birth control disqualify donor candidates, such as Implanon and Depo Provera implants)
- Smoking or substance use habits (you must abstain from nicotine and drug use)
Other Egg Donor Requirements
Donors who meet these basic requirements will submit more detailed information, including their medical and family history, a personal essay, and childhood photos. For those who are preliminarily selected, there are additional screening requirements, including:
- A complete exam and medical history (to assess your reproductive and overall health)
- Blood tests (including infectious disease and hormone level tests)
- Meeting with a genetic counselor
- A mental health screening
How Do I Get Matched?
Once accepted as a donor, your profile, personal essay, and childhood photos will be available for intended parents (IPs) to view. The IPs will select the donor/s they are interested in working with. Next, a donor coordinator will work with individuals or couples to help them determine the best match for their family. IPs often select donors based on various factors, such as:
- Physical traits
- Education level
What Are Donor Cycles?
Egg donor cycles are either “fresh” or “frozen”; these two types primarily differ in when the donor egg is fertilized. With fresh egg donor cycles, the donor egg is fertilized immediately after retrieval, and with frozen cycles, the donor egg is frozen, then later thawed and fertilized when the IPs are ready to start their family. Learn more about fresh and frozen donor egg cycles.
Is Egg Donation Anonymous?
Donors registered with an agency are often anonymous (i.e., the names are unknown to the intended parents). At MyEggBank, the donor’s identity is not shared with the intended parent/s. However, our donors may consent to future contact after the child turns 18, provided all parties agree at that time.
How Does Egg Donation Work?
Approximately four weeks after egg donor acceptance, the egg donation process will begin, once the timing aligns with your menstrual period. The basic steps involved include:
- Administering self-injected fertility medication to stimulate egg production
- Attending at least four 30-minute monitoring appointments
- Getting an injection once your eggs are mature to prepare them for retrieval
- Undergoing the egg retrieval procedure (36 hours after the preparation of your eggs)
Is Egg Donation Safe?
The egg donation procedure is safe, with some mild, temporary side effects, such as bloating, cramps, breast tenderness, and mood swings. In rare cases, more severe side effects can occur. All risks and signs to keep an eye out for will be thoroughly explained before initiating a donor cycle.
How Can I Get Started?
If you’ve decided to become an egg donor, you can take the initial action step by finding a MyEggBank clinic near you and then completing the initial application process. If you are still deciding whether egg donation is right for you, please contact us for more information.