Egg Donation Process for Intended Parents

Egg Donation Process for Intended Parents

At Donor Nexus, we aim to provide you with a personalized experience based on your needs, but we also understand that being informed of what’s ahead may help you feel more in control and prepared. On this page, we provide a generalized overview of the egg donation process with our agency. Please note, your fertility clinic protocols may slightly differ from what is listed below. 

This page outlines the egg donation process for Intended Parents (donor egg recipients). If you are a potential egg donor, learn more about donating eggs with Donor Nexus here

We are here to guide and support you throughout the entire process. If you have any additional questions, please reach out and we will be glad to assist you.

How Long is the Egg Donation Process?

At Donor Nexus, the egg donation process is generally completed within 2-4 months from the time you choose an egg donor.

Step by Step Egg Donation Process 

The egg donation process with Donor Nexus is broken down for you below:

Step 1: Choosing Which Program Best Suits Your Needs

The Donor Nexus team will work with you to determine which egg donation program best suits your needs. If desired, we will set up a phone call or Skype video conference for your initial consultation. Once we determine the specific egg donation cycle, we will work with you to select an egg donor or frozen donor eggs.

Step 2: Egg Donor Selection/Matching

To get you started, we offer free access to our user-friendly online donor database, featuring a wide selection of available egg donors and frozen donor eggs. We aim to make the process as easy as possible for you to browse through profiles on your own time. 

If you would like to begin by discussing your desired characteristics with us, we will be happy to assist you in donor matching. After listening to what you are looking for, we will send you profiles to review that most closely match your criteria.

We encourage you to save any egg donors that catch your eye to your ‘Favorites’ so you can review the profiles with your designated Case Manager. If you have additional questions about a specific egg donor, we will do our best to contact the donor and provide you with an answer.

Option for Meeting Egg Donor:

Donor Nexus offers in-person or Skype meetings for intended parents who would like to get to know the egg donor prior to confirming the match, as long as the egg donor agrees to the meeting. To facilitate the meeting, we will collect a non-refundable $500, which will be put toward our cycle fees if you move forward with our agency.

 

Step 3: Preliminary Paperwork

Once you’ve chosen an egg donor or frozen donor eggs, you will receive preliminary paperwork, a contract and an invoice. All items must be completed and returned to Donor Nexus within 7 days. Once we receive the paperwork, signed agreement and initial deposit, the donor will be secured for you and we will send the official match sheet to your IVF clinic. 

*The initial deposit ranges from $6,500- $8,500 USD and includes 50%  of the agency fee and the donor’s prescreen evaluations.

 

Step 4: Cycle Confirmed, Egg Donor Screening and Intended Mother or Gestational Carrier Pretesting 

Upon receipt of the signed contract and funds, the cycle will be CONFIRMED. The egg donor is reserved and her status is changed to “in cycle” on the database. We will also forward a confirmed match sheet to your fertility doctor and nurse. We will initiate the egg donors prescreen evaluations and the intended mother or gestational carrier will begin their pretesting at this point as well. 

» 4a. Egg Donor Screening Process

Note: This step is only applicable for fresh egg donors. If you are using frozen donor eggs, the contributing donor has already undergone the screenings listed below and the frozen eggs are ready to be shipped. We can ship them throughout the US (excluding New York) and internationally. 

Donor Nexus adheres to the absolute highest egg donor screening standards in our industry. Donor prescreen evaluations consist of medical evaluations, psychological evaluations, and a legal consultation. The evaluations can take up to 2 months to complete, depending on the egg donor’s menstrual cycle. The egg donor may or may not be put on birth control pills.

For a more comprehensive outline, visit: Egg Donor Screening.

» 4b. Intended Mother or Gestational Carrier Pretesting

Your physician will review your medical history and order pretesting to be completed by either your general practitioner (GP) or gynecologist. Donor Nexus will help you schedule your initial consultation with an HRC physician if you have not already established care with another fertility clinic. Some pretests will need to be completed on specific days of your menstrual cycle. 

You can expect to have the following pretesting ordered by your physician:

  • Uterine Cavity Evaluation: sonohysterogram or hysteroscopy with mock embryo transfer (to be completed Cycle Day 6-10 of Menses)
  • State Mandated Infectious Disease Panel
  • Semen Analysis on husband or designated sperm provider
  • Any additional testing the physician requests

 

The physician will review your pretesting results and determine if you are cleared to move forward with the cycle. You will work with your nurse coordinator to determine specific cycle dates. At this time you can book flights and accommodations if necessary.

Step 5: Egg Donor Begins Cycle Medications and Monitoring

Once the clinic has provided medical clearance for the egg donor, we will submit the psychological evaluation and legal clearance letter from the lawyer. The remaining funds are due once medical clearance is issued by the clinic and the egg donor is cleared to cycle.

At this point, the clinic will provide the egg donor a cycle calendar and medication instructions. We keep in close contact with the egg donor throughout her cycle. We remind her of her appointments via text message and make sure she is feeling okay, emotionally and physically.

Next, the egg donor will have a “baseline appointment” to check her ovaries and blood levels to clear her to start medications. Once cleared to start medications, the egg donor will have monitoring ultrasounds and blood work every 2-3 days.

If you select an egg donor from out of state, the number of days she needs to spend at the clinic will be determined by your physician. Most physicians will allow the egg donor to have a baseline ultrasound and 1-2 monitoring appointments close to her home. The egg donor will then spend 6-10 days monitoring at your fertility clinic. Donor Nexus will orchestrate the outside monitoring appointments, travel, and accommodation for the egg donor and her companion.

Step 6: “Trigger Shot” for Egg Donor

At the end of the ~10-12 day timeframe when the donor’s hormones have reached the appropriate level, she will take the “trigger” shot. This injection releases the eggs from the side of the egg-containing structures, called follicles. The trigger shot is taken about 34 hours prior to the egg retrieval.

Step 7: Egg Retrieval 

The egg donor will be accompanied by her companion to the egg retrieval procedure. This will be completed at your chosen clinic and the procedure itself is no longer than 20-30 minutes.

If the egg donor is from out of town she will likely fly home the day after egg retrieval, as long as she feels okay. Most egg donors are able to return to school or work the next day. The egg donor has earned her compensation once the egg retrieval is completed.

Step 8: In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) Procedure

At this point, the reproductive endocrinologist will begin the IVF procedure. The retrieved donor eggs will be placed in a petri dish with the received sperm cells to become fertilized. In some cases, ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) may be used to inject a single sperm cell into an egg. Once the eggs are fertilized, they become embryos. The embryos are usually grown in the laboratory for 5-6 days until they reach the blastocyst stage. If you are electing to do PGT-A testing on the embryos, the viable blastocyst embryos will be biopsied and sent for genetic testing. The results generally take 1-3 weeks. You will then discuss with your physician and determine which embryo(s) to thaw and transfer to your uterus or designated gestational carrier surrogate.

Step 9: Embryo Transfer

For our All-Inclusive packages, the embryo transfer will take place at HRC Fertility in Southern California. Otherwise, the embryo transfer will take place at your chosen fertility clinic. 

On the morning of the embryo transfer, the physician will discuss the results of the cycle and show you photos of the embryos. You will determine which embryos to transfer/freeze/discard. Most physicians require 2 days of bed rest following the embryo transfer.

Step 10: After Your Embryo Transfer

You will be seen at your local clinic 10-12 days after the embryo transfer for your initial bHCG blood test. If there is a positive pregnancy, you will continue to monitor at your fertility clinic for the first trimester. For our All-Inclusive packages, an HRC physician will oversee your care during this time. Once you reach your second trimester, you will return to your OBGYN for the remainder of your pregnancy.

Please note this is a generalized description of the egg donation process in order to provide you with a better understanding of what to expect. If you have any additional questions regarding your specific circumstances, please contact us or your IVF clinic. 

 

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We are always here to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to start your journey!