Embryo Donation Process for Recipients

The Embryo Donation Process: An Overview of What to Expect

Below, we share a step-by-step overview of the embryo donation process with Donor Nexus. Compared to the embryo adoption process, embryo donation is a relatively straightforward process which can typically be completed within 2-3 months from the time you secure a donor embryo.

Step 1: Finding a donor embryo(s)  »

To get started, you can register for free access to our online database to begin browsing through donor embryo profiles. You can access our database through our website or download our app for easy mobile browsing. On our donor embryo database, you will find profiles sharing information about embryo donors and the embryo(s) they have chosen to donate to be used by others. We add profiles to our database regularly so always feel free to check back.

Once you've narrowed down your search or selected a profile, we will be happy to connect with you via phone, email, or video conference to discuss your options regarding specific donors and our program. 

Step 2: Securing a donor embryo(s) »

Once you choose a donor embryo(s), we will request you to send us the following information:

a. Name and date of birth
b. Partner name and date of birth, if applicable
c. Mailing address

Donor Nexus will email you preliminary paperwork, a deposit invoice (50% of the cycle fee), and an agreement. You will have one week to complete the paperwork and submit funds.

Upon receipt of the signed contract and funds, the embryo will be secured. The embryos are removed from the database and can no longer be offered to other patients. We will also forward a confirmed match sheet to your IVF physician.

Step 3: Consultation with a physician »

Next, you will be put in contact with HRC Fertility to schedule a consultation with the designated physician.

Step 4: Pretesting »

The IVF physician will order pretesting to be completed before the frozen embryo transfer cycle. You will be put in contact with a nurse coordinator who will give you pretesting orders and help you throughout the entire process. Note: If you live outside of Southern California, the pretesting does not have to be completed at HRC Fertility.

You can expect to have the following pretesting ordered by your physician if you are 45 years old or younger:

  • Uterine cavity evaluation- sonohysterogram or hysteroscopy with mock embryo transfer (to be completed cycle day 6-10 of menses)
  • State-mandated infectious disease panel for you AND your partner, if applicable.
  • Any additional testing the physician requests

Step 5: Confirming cycle dates »

Once your pretesting is completed, you will determine cycle dates with your nurse coordinator. Your nurse coordinator will also order your medications.

Step 6: Medication phase (~35 days) »

You will be on medications for about 35 days before your embryo transfer. You will have 2- 3 monitoring ultrasounds completed before your embryo transfer. The ultrasounds are spaced apart one to two weeks. These appointments ensure your uterine lining is ready for transfer.

Step 7: Donor embryo transfer »

The embryo transfer will take place at HRC Fertility Newport Beach or Encino clinic. Most physicians require 2 days of bed rest following the embryo transfer. If you live outside of Southern California, you can expect to be in California for a total of 4 days.

In the rare event that your embryo(s) do(es) not survive the thaw, the laboratory will be instructed to either thaw another embryo from the same profile OR Donor Nexus will reach out to you to provide you with a backup embryo profile. You can choose to either thaw a backup embryo OR receive a refund or credit if the profiles do not meet your desired criteria.

Step 8: Pregnancy test »

Your first blood bHCG level will be drawn 10-12 days after transfer. 


Please note this is a brief description of the overall process to provide you with a better understanding of what to expect!

Navigating the Donor Embryo Process: From Start to Finish

At Donor Nexus, we've made it our mission to help intended parents along their unique journeys from the very beginning of the process. Throughout our website and blog, we provide a wealth of information to help guide you through the donor embryo process and provide you with hope for what's to come. If you have any additional questions, our team is here to help in any way we can.

Our Embryo Donation Program »   Embryo Donation FAQ »   Embryo Donation vs. Adoption »

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