3 Key Factors to Prioritize When Choosing an Egg Donor Feb 08, 2024 | by Victoria Nino, Guest Author

The Most Important Factors When Finding an Egg Donor

Advice from an experienced DEIVF mom who has done this once or twice (or three times!)

Finding an egg donor can be exciting and equally overwhelming. Whether this is your first time considering donor eggs or you’ve always known you would need an egg donor to build your family, choosing an egg donor is not an easy process. I’ve personally been through the egg donor selection process multiple times now with different agencies and egg banks. Based on my personal experience, my advice to you is to prioritize the 3 key factors listed below when selecting an egg donor. Let's jump right in!

1. Do You Want a Closed or Open/Open ID Donation?

Before finding an egg donor, consider whether you prefer an open or closed egg donation. Find more tips in this blog!

This is the first thing you need to address, before even beginning your search. You don’t want to choose someone who isn’t going to be able to give you the relationship you want, because once legal contracts are signed, it’s almost impossible to change. Trust me, I’ve tried (with another agency).

We chose someone open to being contacted by our child at the age of 18 years old, but after having my daughter, I realized that wasn’t good enough for us. I wanted access to our egg donor, I wanted to be able to email her if my daughter had a question. I have been fighting for 3 years now to try to revise our agreement with no prevail. Learn from my mistakes. 

2. Egg Donor’s Personal Health and Family Health History

When deciding how to choose an egg donor, consider the donor's personal health and family health history. Learn more tips on finding an egg donor in this blog!

Before you go looking at GPAs and eye color, it’s important to ensure your donor is healthy. Look at their family history. Are their parents still living? What about grandparents? Was there any mental illness in the family? Or cancer? What about allergies? Find out what genetic screening has taken place and if your donor is a genetic carrier of anything.

Your chosen egg donor agency or egg bank should provide you with this information. For instance, Donor Nexus lists genetic carrier results directly on the egg donor profile and can typically request additional genetic carrier testing if needed.

3. How Fertile is the Egg Donor?

When finding an egg donor, it's important to make sure the agency, egg bank, or clinic has assessed the egg donor's fertility. Find more tips for choosing an egg donor in this blog!

This might seem like a no-brainer, but again, when the excitement takes over it’s easy to fall in love with your donor’s baby pictures and 20-year-old model status, but unfortunately young and beautiful doesn't always equal fertile. If the right egg donor screening isn’t done, you could find yourself in my shoes. The first donor I ever chose with another agency was a first-time egg donor. I chose her solely based on her physical characteristics and didn’t ask any questions about her fertility or health history. I trusted that the right tests were done and that if she was in the database, chances were, she was fertile as a turtle. WRONG. 

The day before her IVF retrieval, the majority of her eggs had dissolved. We had already invested so much emotionally and financially. To say I was heartbroken was an understatement. I was naive to think that an egg donor equaled a baby, but unfortunately, that is not the case.

This isn’t to say that first-time donors aren’t fertile, because obviously, they all have to start somewhere, but working with the right egg donor agency (or egg bank) and fertility clinic is extremely important. Find out what type of fertility screening is done. Ask your doctor “Would you choose this donor if it was for your own family”? Your doctor and agency Case Manager should be able to help you narrow down your search because they ultimately want you to have success too. Don’t be afraid to involve them in the process.


Find Additional Resources in the Donor Nexus Blog:

1. 7 Ways I Learned to Cope With Infertility Grief

2. Should I Use Donor Eggs? Will I Have Any Regrets?

3. Things to Keep in Perspective When Choosing an Egg Donor

4. Epigenetics and Donor Eggs: The Connection Established in the Womb

5. Explaining Donor Conception to Your Child: Dos and Don'ts

About Donor Nexus:

Donor Nexus Egg Bank and Egg Donation Agency in Newport Beach, Orange County, Southern CaliforniaDonor Nexus is a boutique egg bank and agency in Newport Beach, California, working with intended parents and egg donors worldwide. We offer a personalized experience delivered through our proven donor egg and donor embryo programs. Since our establishment in 2012, over 1,200 babies have been born through our programs. Looking for an egg donor? Register for free access to our online donor database to explore your options through with us. We look forward to assisting you in any way we can.

About the Author:

Victoria Nino is a guest author and two-time mother via egg donation who spent many years chasing the dream of motherhood that she's now living. She offers virtual online support groups for others embarking on the journey of DEIVF, and an authentic community on her Instagram as well.

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