Every year there are thousands of individuals and couples whose only chance of having a baby is through egg donation. Choosing to donate your eggs to someone who needs them is a selfless act that gives hope to those unable to conceive naturally. Find out more about egg donation, the process and how you become an egg donor below.
Egg donors need to fit the following criteria:
Be 21 - 35 years old (i.e. donation must take place before your 36th birthday)
Be a non-smoker
Have a body mass index of less than 30
Have an approved medical and family history
Have approved blood tests (hormone, genetic and infectious screening)
Be aware that each donor can consent to help create up to 10 families
Be aware that you will be required to administer your own injections to stimulate your ovaries
Have considered the emotional impact your donation could have on your own children or any potential future children you may have
Be aware that you will be required to attend the clinic at designated times and that these appointments are important, so there may be a temporary impact on your lifestyle
(Patients are on stimulation injections & monitoring for an average of 8-10 days with a few visits expected during this time)
Before we go any further, we first need to explain what egg donation is and why it is often essential to fertility treatments. Egg donation is when a woman with healthy eggs donates multiple eggs to someone else’s fertility treatment.
In some cases, women will donate eggs to someone they know, such as a family member or a friend who is unable to conceive using their own eggs. However, other egg donors simply donate their eggs for the pleasure of being able to help others to have the families they’ve always dreamed of.
If you are considering donating your eggs, and you’re wondering how to qualify for egg donation, you have come to the right place. It is important to consider whether or not you can donate your eggs. TFP donor applicants need to be between the ages of 21 and 35 to be considered. However, in exceptional circumstances, older women donating their eggs will be accepted (such as family members for known egg donation, for example).
Before you donate your eggs, you have to undergo some health tests to ensure that you don’t have any serious diseases or infections that could be passed on to the baby or mother. During this time, you must also be honest about whether there are any inheritable diseases in your family.
Yes, you can donate your eggs to a friend or family member. However, there are restrictions on mixing egg and sperm of close family members.
If you are considering egg donation in the UK, you may be wondering whether you can be paid to donate. In the UK, it is illegal to pay for egg donation. However, egg donors can receive up to £750 in egg donor compensation to help cover any costs. If your expenses are more than this amount, you can claim more for things like accommodation, travel and childcare.
If you are from overseas and not a permanent resident in the UK, you will be compensated in the same way as above. However, it is important to note that you will not be able to claim overseas travel expenses.
In the UK, you have no legal rights or responsibilities over any children born as a result of your donation. You will also have no say over their upbringing or be required to pay anything towards their care.
If you choose to donate your eggs, you must be aware that any children born from your donation can ask to contact you via the HFEA when they reach the age of 18. Therefore, some donors choose to write a goodwill message to their future children, and many families find that helpful. Ultimately, it’s up to you whether or not you choose to have a relationship with any children born from your donation in the future.
When donating your eggs, you will go through aspects of IVF treatment, and it is important to be aware that this can affect you both physically and emotionally. The egg donation process is as follows:
Personal information: We will ask you to provide some personal information about yourself. This will include non-identifying information that will help hopeful parents at the time of donation and any children in later years who are born as a result of your donation.
Health tests: Before you can donate your eggs, you will need to have thorough tests for any diseases and infections that may be passed onto the mother or baby.
During the health test stage, it is very important that you tell us whether there are any problems in your family’s medical histories. If you do not divulge all information about your family’s medical records and hide facts like serious physical or mental conditions, you could face legal action if a child born from your donation inherits any of these things.
Fertility counselling: At TFP, we know first-hand how taxing fertility problems and treatments can be, and if you’re looking to donate your eggs, the treatments can be difficult in a whole new way. When donating your eggs at our clinic, we require you to take up professional counselling from our on-site experts. Counselling can help you consider all the implications of your decision and how it could affect your future too.
Your consent: Before you donate your eggs, you will need to sign a consent form. You can change or withdraw your consent if you change your mind.
Medication: You will take daily injections to suppress your natural hormone production.
Scans: You will have a scan to check that your natural menstrual cycle has been completely and successfully suppressed.
Hormones: One or two days before your eggs are due to be collected, you will be given an injection of hormones. These hormones will help the eggs mature. The number of eggs collected during the egg retrieval will depend on how many are ready.
Collection: We make an appointment for you to have your eggs collected. During this procedure, you will be sedated under general anaesthetic for around half an hour. Afterwards, you may feel a little bit tender and bruised, but you will be given pain medication to ease any discomfort.
Donating your eggs is very safe. The procedure is simple, and our fertility experts perform these procedures every single day. The only slight risk is that you may have a reaction to fertility drugs, called ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), but our fertility doctors will thoroughly talk you through any concerns you may have before the egg collection procedure.
If you would like to find out how your eggs were used and whether there was a pregnancy after egg donation, you can find out the following information:
The number of children born
Their year of birth
Unfortunately, we cannot give you any more information than this as it may result in the potential identification of the children conceived through your donation. Just as your anonymity is important for your protection, so is that of any children born from your donation.
Donating your eggs is a serious decision and one that requires a lot of thought. You need to consider multiple outcomes and the effect such a decision could have on your family life and future.
Egg donation is an incredibly selfless act and one that we are always extremely honoured to be a part of at TFP. If you would like to find out more about how you can donate your eggs at our clinic and book your initial consultation, please do not hesitate to get in touch for a no-obligation chat. We would be happy to answer your questions and talk about what your next steps are for helping others have a family.
“Becoming an egg donor was an easy choice for me. I had been blessed with 3 wonderful children & I wanted to help others less fortunate experience something many of us take for granted. I have donated twice now & plan to donate again in the future as I found the process to not only be easy and straightforward but also one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.”
“The opportunity to help somebody have a precious and long-awaited child through donating eggs was an experience I was honoured to be a part of.”