If you’ve considered becoming an egg donor, you’ve likely been curious about whether donating your eggs will affect your future fertility. It’s an important question to ask! Even if you’re not ready to have children of your own now, you should still feel confident that the door will be open if and when you decide to embark on that journey in the future. Research shows that if you donate your eggs, it does not have a negative impact on your fertility. So yes, if you donate your eggs, you can still have babies in the future!
Since egg donation involves hormonal medication and surgical procedures, it’s a valid concern for women to ask, “does donating eggs affect fertility?” or “does donating eggs make you infertile?” However, research has shown that donating eggs does not decrease your fertility.
If you’re concerned that egg donation will diminish your natural ovarian reserve (egg supply), you’re not alone. This is actually a common misconception. Did you know that a healthy reproductive woman has hundreds of thousands of eggs which will never be used? That means that when you donate eggs, it’s certainly not all of them!
At birth, there are approximately 1 to 2 million eggs; and by the time of puberty, only about 300,000 remain. Of these, only 300 to 400 will be ovulated during a woman's reproductive lifetime. During each cycle, it’s estimated as many as 1,000 eggs begin the maturation process, and usually only 1 egg makes it through to ovulation. The remaining eggs are unused and absorbed by the body.
When eggs are donated, the eggs that are retrieved are the ones that the body would have naturally discarded. The medications egg donors are on only ensures that the eggs will grow equally and all eggs produced will be mature and viable.
You will lose the same number of eggs in an egg donation cycle as you would have in a normal menstruation cycle. Therefore, egg donation does not deplete your egg supply. An egg donation simply makes use of all the maturing eggs, even the ones your body would have had absorbed.
Now, we’ll cover three scenarios: getting pregnant during an egg donation cycle, pregnancy after egg donation (within the first two months), and getting pregnant in the future.
Actually, it’s important to know that your chances of getting pregnant during your egg donor cycle are extremely heightened since your eggs are stimulated and ready for pregnancy. This is why egg donors are required to remain abstinent for approximately three to four weeks while taking stimulation medications. It is recommended that you remain abstinent until your withdrawal period following your egg retrieval.
Can I get pregnant right after donating eggs? Yes! Due to the hormonal medications, you are actually more likely to get pregnant in the month after your egg donation. That’s why it is recommended to be very cautious right after the egg donation procedure. If you do get pregnant right after donating eggs, your pregnancy will be safe for both you and the baby. After the first month, your fertility level will become normal again.
If you’re wondering, “if I donate my eggs, can I still have babies?”, the answer is yes! Studies show that women who choose to pursue pregnancies of their own after donating eggs do not have increased risk of infertility. We’ve seen many Donor Nexus egg donors have successful pregnancies after donating eggs!
Throughout your egg donor screening process, you will learn a lot about your own fertility. You’ll get insights into things like your AMH levels, which can be helpful in planning for your own family in the future.
Going through the process of egg donation may bring up thoughts about having children of your own someday, and we hope this blog was helpful in explaining why donating eggs does not decrease fertility. Whether or not you've decided on starting your own family in the future, we’re glad you took the time to read up on pregnancy after egg donation. Our team is here to help if you have any additional questions!
The information provided in this blog is intended to provide a generalized overview and is not to be considered medical advice. Please consult with your physician for actual medical advice specific to you.