Egg Donation Medications: Q&A Video Feb 03, 2023 | by Donor Nexus

Egg Donation Medications Q&A

A common question about egg donation is, "What type of medication will I be on?" In this blog, we share an overview of egg donor medications, however, your specific medication protocol will be prescribed by your fertility physician based on your hormone levels.

Why Are Egg Donors Placed on Birth Control Pills?

As part of the egg donation process, egg donors can expect to be placed on birth control pills before starting stimulation medications. This has been shown to help follicles (a fluid sac in the ovary that contains one immature egg) grow at a similar rate which will lead to a greater number of mature eggs retrieved. 

What Medications Will I Take as an Egg Donor?

Most egg donors take a combination of medications that include FSH, LH and an Antagonist. These medications contain FSH, a hormone that helps stimulate the ovaries to produce follicles. Menopur® is used to help develop and mature each follicle. 

What Is an Antagonist?

An antagonist will help prevent premature ovulation.

Every donor will take a final injection, which is called a "trigger" shot. The purpose of this shot is to help your ovaries release all the mature eggs for your egg retrieval. Trigger shots are done 32-36 hours before your egg retrieval.

How Long Will I Be on Medications as an Egg Donor?

Egg donors are typically on medications for about 10 days, but it depends on how your ovaries and your hormone levels respond to the medications. All these medications are self-injections into the lower abdomen with a thin needle.

Egg Donor Medication Experience: Day in the Life Video

Video Transcript – Narrated by an Egg Donor:

Trigger warning: This video contains footage of needle injections. All medications are prescribed by an IVF physician.

I am officially cleared to start medications. I will be taking 200 units of Follistim® and 75 units of Menopur®. This is what my cycle calendar currently looks like. It is subject to change based on my response to the medications. 

Here is a chart of the different types of medications you can take during your cycle. Option 2 is a list of medications I am taking. I have to refrigerate the Follistim® and my Lupron® trigger. I was told I can take my injections any time from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM but I have to take it consistently. I chose 8:00 p.m. (Pro tip: Set an alarm on your phone as a reminder!) Here is everything that I need to take my Menopur® and my Follistim®. The clinic gave me tips on how to prevent OHSS, so I went grocery shopping. I got protein shakes, chicken, bananas, and water. 

I’ve taken 4 days of medications and I’m reacting very well. They’ve asked me to gradually decrease my Follistim® dosage and I will also be starting Ganirelix® tonight. I don’t feel bloated but I will keep you updated. Here is everything I need to take my Menopur®, Follistim®, and Ganirelix®. 

I’ve now completed 6 days of medications and I do feel a little bloated but the doctor said that's normal. All my follicles are growing nicely. They are going to decrease my Follistim® just a little bit. I have a couple more check-ups to go but I will keep you updated when it’s time to trigger.

I just got confirmation that I will be doing my trigger injections tonight. These are the last and most important injections. I will be doing a combo trigger and it has to be done at exactly 7:20 PM tonight. Just a quick tip: Always set an alarm for your trigger injection. I set mine 5 minutes before and 1 minute before so I have time to prep my injections. It’s super important to take the trigger shot at the exact time as instructed. Typically, your egg retrieval will be 32-36 hours after your trigger shot.

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