Donor Nexus Blog

Taking Birth Control Pills Before Your IVF Cycle? Find Out Why!

Birth Control

l Before IVF

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An Attitude of Gratitude

Thanksgiving is a time for all of us to be thankful and reflect on what is good in our lives. Unfortunately, for some of us, this can be tricky. The holidays can spark mixed emotions. Some look forward to the holiday season while others would rather avoid it because of the anxiety and stress it can bring. During the holidays, it’s important to remember that this is a time for reflection and gratitude. It’s not about finding the right present or how much you spent on your loved one.

Psychologists, Dr. Robert A. Emmons of the University of California, Davis and Dr. Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami, have studied the effects of gratitude1. In one study, three different groups wrote down things that happened during their week. One group wrote down the things that they were grateful for. The second group wrote down irritating or unpleasant things that occurred. The third group wrote down their experiences, regardless of being positive or negative. The psychologists found that after 10 weeks of journaling, the individuals in the first group were more optimistic and had an overall better feeling about their lives. Another study by Dr. Emmons shows that expressing gratitude increases happiness while reducing depression2.

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How to Overcome Your Fear of Needles

Trypanophobia is defined as the fear of injections, and this affects approximately 10% of the population, where 20% of the population has a fear of pointy objects in general. Although this is a learned condition, most people acquire it by age four to six. If this applies to you, you are not alone.

Unfortunately for trypanophobics, fertility treatment involves a series of self-injections and in-clinic blood draws that can make the process less than fun. Luckily, there are some things you can do to reduce your needle anxiety and reduce pain with injections.

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My Egg Donor Experience, by Donor B

All my life I dreamt of becoming a mother. When I was about 7 months pregnant and loving every single moment of growing a beautiful life inside of me, I thought about women who could not experience this. I started to research what I could do to help and that’s when I came across egg donation. Right when I started reading about the whole process, I knew I wanted to do this and be a part of people’s dreams coming true.

I had a friend go through Donor Nexus so I decided to go online and fill out an application. Within a day Donor Nexus had reached out to me to explain the whole process of how everything works. About 2 months passed by and I got a text, email AND call from Mackenzie saying I had been matched and that we were just waiting on another intended parent for a shared cycle. About a month later I got another call saying we had another match and that time was now of the essence. We had multiple phone conversations to get me cleared to start the process. The day came when Mackenzie called to let me know that all medicine would be delivered to my doorstep the next day for me to start injections. This was my first time as an egg donor so I began to get a little stressed out. I knew that the intended

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Stress Management and Fertility Treatment

Stress and Fertility

“Relax,” “Take a vacation,” “Don’t worry so much”. These are a few comments infertile couples frequently hear. It may seem like simple advice but when you’ve gone through multiple failed cycles and you’re nearing your break point, the last thing you want to hear is just relax. You’re probably thinking, “How can I relax when I’m doing everything I can and I still can’t get pregnant?”.

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Misconceptions of Fertility

If you feel stressed or anxious about your ability to conceive, you are not alone. According to a study by Fertility and Sterility in 2014, 40% of women of all ages were concerned about their fertility. In the same study, 40% of women were unaware of the ovulation cycle and one-third were unaware of how obesity, irregular menses, and aging can affect procreative success. Below are some common misconceptions about fertility:

The Menstrual Cycle

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How to Care for Your Body When Donating

You have just been chosen to be an egg donor and are about to embark on a journey to give someone the gift of parenthood! The process includes taking medications for about ten days that will grow your follicles and prime the eggs inside them. As with all medications, there can be some side effects including bloating and irritability. Below are a few tips and tricks to help ease the side effects, keep you on track, and expedite your recovery!

Diet

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Surrogacy Spotlight: It's Time Surrogacy Agency

We often have Intended Parents who are also interested in finding out more information on gestational carrier surrogacy. Although we are only a donor egg and embryo agency, we partner with a select few surrogacy agencies that we highly recommend. We have asked Angela Hartshorn, founder of It's Time Surrogacy, to provide some basic information on the logistics and costs involved.

It’s Time Surrogacy is a San Diego based surrogacy agency which is owned and operated by two women who have dedicated their lives to the infertility world. Angela Hartshorn, the founder/ Co-Owner of It’s Time Surrogacy has been in the field since 1994 and has a plethora of knowledge. Her enriched clinical experience makes her able to help their clients navigate the fertility process smoothly. Christina Thursby, Co-Owner, has served as a gestational surrogate five times over the last decade. Each journey was unique, brought her immeasurable joy and equipped her with the skills to support everyone along the journey. Their services are geared towards a family approach and they pride themselves on offering impeccable services and support throughout the entire process. They also offer

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My Egg Donor Experience, by Donor J

Initially I became a donor because of the compensation benefits. I was looking for another job to supplement my income. I came across egg donation and began thinking of what an impactful decision this would be for a family wishing to conceive and having issues. I filled out the profile and within a few months had been selected by a pair of intended parents. This was my first time donating and I thought it was sort of unusual the parents wanted to meet me in person. Donor Nexus made it very clear that I in no way had to agree to this but if I was okay with it someone from Donor Nexus would also be in the room and help guide our conversation.

I agreed to meet them and am VERY happy I did. They were the sweetest couple and I really connected with them. They were immediately grateful for my willingness to meet them and also to be involved with this process. I left afterwards feeling extremely appreciated.

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All Eggs in One Basket: The Importance of Having a Back-up Plan

As we know, not everything in life is guaranteed. When you make the decision to use an egg donor to conceive, it’s good to have a back-up plan in the event you come across a “bump in the road”. Of course, everyone plans and hopes for a smooth process but as we all know nothing in life is a sure thing. What we can do is prepare you and make you aware of the possible hiccups that can arise with egg donation cycles. We have listed a few scenarios that could happen and what back-up options are available to get you back on track quickly.

Scenario 1: Egg donor is disqualified or backs out of a cycle

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We’ve Completed Our Family and Have Extra Embryos: Now What?

When a couple or individual completes their family, they often times have left over embryos. Many patients wonder what they do with the extra embryos. There are three options available to patients.

Option 1: Discard the Embryos

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Important Update Effective August 22 2016: FDA Amends Donor Embryo Regulation

Important Information on Embryo Donation Below:

In a new final rule published in Wednesday’s Federal Register, FDA has amended regulations on donor eligibility, including the screening and testing of donors of particular human cells, tissues, and cellular ant tissue-based products (HCT/Ps). (21 CFR Part 1271)

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Anonymous vs. Open Egg Donation (and the In-Between)

When an intended parent is choosing an egg donor, they can choose to keep the donation anonymous, semi-anonymous, open, or known. Most intended parents choose anonymous egg donation so that no direct contact is made with the egg donor. There are a small number of intended parent(s) that want an open (or non-anonymous) egg donation because they want to have the option of staying in touch with the egg donor throughout the offspring’s life.

 

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"The Story of a Frozen Princess" An Honest and Brave Recollection of One Intended Parents Journey

 

“Oh okay…okay…” head nodding, blank stare…

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My Egg Donor Experience, by Donor N

When I first heard about egg donation, I was really interested in learning more about the process. I did some research and got really excited for my initial consultation. After I went to my consultation, I couldn’t wait to set up my profile and get started! I thought it was an amazing way to help people who couldn’t conceive and I knew it would be a wonderful feeling. A few months after I set up my profile, I got chosen to donate. I must admit, I was really nervous! Mackenzie was great at calming me down and letting me know that everything would be okay. She made me feel so much less nervous. Once I started my injections, I then got excited and anxious. I didn’t know how I’d feel throughout the process, but I soon realized it wasn’t bad at all! I knew I could get through it, and

I knew I’d feel great afterwards knowing I was helping someone. The closer I got to my donation date, the more bloated I started feeling. The doctor told me it was normal because I had so many eggs and my ovaries were stretched out. The donation process itself was pretty simple and I left the clinic with some minor cramping. I stayed in bed for a few days and drank Gatorade as I was told to do. It took about a week and a half for the bloating to go away and I felt fine after that. My first donation was in 2013 and I have done 5 cycles so far, soon to be 6. Every single donation resulted in a happy ending…babies! Some were even twins! I actually received a thank you card from one family that I donated to and it made me feel so amazing inside that I started crying. Finding out that this

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Reasons to be an Egg Donor

Are you wondering what are the reasons to be an egg donor? At Donor Nexus, we work closely with egg donors who choose to become an egg donor for various reasons. Primarily, the reasons for donating eggs are to help an infertile couple or individual pursue their dreams of parenthood, while also earning generous compensation for your contribution.

Why Do Women Donate Eggs?

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My Egg Donor Experience, by Donor D

Becoming an egg donor was one of the easiest decisions of my life. Being a mother myself, I couldn't even imagine what the intended parents are going through with trying to conceive. When I first found out about egg donation, I was a little bit nervous, but very excited to be able to help others. I got my first match within a couple months after submitting my application and Mackenzie was always so helpful with any questions or concerns that I had, so the process was very easy for me. A few weeks after my first cycle, I called Mackenzie to check the results of the potential pregnancies for the multiple couples and ALL 3 couples got pregnant!!! How awesome is that?! That's when I realized I wanted to donate again as many times as possible. That moment made me feel like I was on cloud 9 and

that those people now get to experience the best thing in life, being a parent. I've donated my eggs 4 times now (soon to be 5) and it's been the best experience every time. I highly recommend becoming a donor, you get to help others dreams come true and the compensation isn't half bad either ;) It's a win-win situation for everyone. The process is different for everyone's bodies, my body takes very well to the medication and I always have tons of eggs so my ovaries are obviously stretched out, so it takes me about a week after surgery to feel 100% again. The recovery time shortens after every surgery I've had and the pain is very minor cramping and bloating. The process is so rewarding, that the temporary pain is totally worth it! I hope this blog post is informative to others and more

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What you need to know about the Zika virus

By now I’m sure you have heard of the Zika virus spreading in the tropic countries. You may not have given it much thought considering Zika has not been found in the continental United States. However, if you are trying to conceive or are pregnant, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has advised not to travel to parts of the world that are affected by the Zika virus, if possible. This applies to egg donors and surrogates as well.

Talk of the Zika virus stirred up again when The Today Show news anchor Savannah Guthrie announced recently that she’s pregnant and will not be traveling to Brazil for the Summer Olympics. The virus is contracted through mosquito bites; however, it can be transmitted by sexual intercourse, blood transfusions, and reproductive tissues. Egg donors are deemed ineligible if they have been diagnosed with Zika within the last 6 months, have traveled or lived in an affected area within the last 6 months, and/or has had sexual intercourse with a person who has either traveled or lived in an affected area or who has been diagnosed with Zika.

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A Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming an Egg Donor

Have you been thinking about becoming an egg donor and what to know what the process is like? Here is a step-by-step guide to becoming an egg donor.

Step 1: Complete an application

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Why a Proven Egg Donor Backed Out of a Cycle

Recently we had an egg donor back out of a cycle, days leading up to starting medications. This came as a complete shock considering she donated multiple times previously. The donor had gone through a recent divorce and found out that she had to move out of state within two weeks for work. She felt the pressure of being a single mom and moving to a new city where she had to quickly find a new home and daycare. Adding an egg donor cycle on top of it only increased her stress level. Although she did not want to disappoint the intended parents she knew that she would not be able to commit to the cycle 100% and did not want to jeopardize her health.

The intended parents were saddened that their favorite donor was not able to cycle; however, they understood the circumstance and felt that it was best that she not proceed. With the added stress of the move, this could affect the outcome of the cycle, which is no risk anyone wants to take. Sometimes we are unable to control an egg donor cycle and we must remember that egg donors are real people with real lives. Life can get in the way and we need to remember that. Although it is easy to be upset with the donor, it is important to remember that these are young women who have jobs, exams, and personal lives too.

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