Ready to become a donor?
Learn the steps to becoming a donor below.
Thank you for visiting our website to learn about becoming an Egg Donor. Through your generous gift of egg donation, couples will have the chance to carry and deliver a child and complete their families.
There are a few simple steps in becoming an Egg Donor:
- Educate yourself about the egg donation process.
- See if you qualify by applying HERE
- Our Donor Coordinator will contact you shortly after.
EDUCATE YOURSELF ABOUT THE EGG DONATION PROCESS
Who can be an Egg Donor?
Women between the ages of 19-32, in excellent health, who don’t smoke and have a minimum of a High School Diploma or GED are potential candidates. While a college degree or working towards a degree is not required, it is highly desirable. Also for your health and safety, your BMI should be between 19-25.0. Use this convenient calculator to determine your BMI.
Supplied by BMI Calculator USA
What is the time commitment?
- Completing the screening process to become a TFAFC egg donor takes approximately 1 month. Once selected as a donor, the donation cycle is approximately 2 weeks with 3-4 brief office visits. The only full day of work/school missed is the day of the egg retrieval since anesthesia is used. Work/school and most normal activities can resume the next day.
What will the intended parents know about me?
- While TFAFC works with known donors, our donors are anonymous. The intended parents will know only your physician characteristics, relevant details of your medical and family history, donor number, birth year, and see a few pictures of you that you provide. Your name and other identifying information will remain strictly confidential.
What are the benefits?
- A primary reason our donors give for donating eggs is the donor’s desire to help another person experience the joys of having and raising children. This “gift of life” is a strong motivating factor for a woman to donate eggs for the benefit of another.
- The financial compensation (starting at $3000+) reflects the dedication, time commitment, and responsibility donors assume and is not dependent on the number of eggs retrieved. A cycle involves daily hormonal injections, attending monitoring appointments, an egg retrieval, missed work/school. and some discomfort from the medications/retrieval.
- There is no cost to you for the medications, lab tests, monitoring, or egg retrieval. Any child born from your donation is the legal and financial responsibility of the intended parents.
What happens during a donation cycle?
- Once the donor is selected for a cycle, the donor’s and intended mother’s cycles are synchronized- usually with birth control pills. When instructed, the donor begins fertility medication (Follistim, Gonal-F, and/or Menopur) to stimulate the ovaries to develop eggs (ovarian stimulation). An additional medication (Ganirelix or Cetrotide) is added midway in the stimulation to help prevent premature release (ovulation) of the eggs.
- The eggs are microscopic and can’t be seen directly, therefore we track their development by measuring the size and number of follicles (fluid filled sac in which the egg grows) and measuring the level of hormone (estradiol) produced by the follicles.
- Together the measurements for follicle sizes and blood tests indicate when the follicles are likely to contain a fully developed egg. a final medication (hCG and/or lupron) is taken to mature the eggs and prepare them for retrieval and fertilization by sperm.
- The Egg Retrieval is performed using ultrasound to guide the needle through the vaginal wall and into the ovary to retrieve the egg from each follicle. For your comfort and safety, an anesthesiologist administers sedating medication so you sleep during the 20-30 minute procedure. This twilight sleep, not general anesthesia and after recovering for an hour at our Scottsdale location, you go home to rest for the remainder of the day. Most regular activities (driving, work, school) can resume the next day.
- You will receive the compensation check after the retrieval and we will call you after the procedure to ensure everything is well.
What medications are used?
- Fertility medications used in the cycle perform 3 functions. Follistim, Gonal-F, and/or Menopur are used to stimulate the growth and development of the eggs. Ganirelix or Cetrotide is added to prevent premature release (ovulation) of the eggs. HCG and/or Lupron is used to mature the eggs when they are fully developed (trigger shot). Medications are usually taken for 10-12 days and are injected subcutaneously (like an insulin injection).
- Other medications given include antibiotics after the retrieval to help prevent infection, and pain medication to enhance your comfort after the retrieval.
What are the risks and side effects of the fertility medications?
- Hormonal medications used to stimulate the ovaries have been used for over 30 years to treat women who do not ovulate regularly. Studies show no increased incidence, now or in the future, of birth defects, congenital abnormalities, spontaneous miscarriages, or cancer associated with the use of these medications. The medications won’t interfere with your ability to become pregnant and menopause won’t occur sooner.
- Occasionally, the ovaries respond better than expected to the medication and the ovaries become over stimulated. Ovarian Hyperstimulation generally causes additional enlargement of the ovaries often accompanied by significant bloating and abdominal discomfort. This condition is self-limiting (only lasts until your next period) and can be reduced with medication (Cabergoline) or prevented with the use of Lupron alone as the trigger shot.
What are the risks of the egg retrieval?
The primary risks of the egg retrieval, bleeding and infection are rare. Complete information will be provided at the personal interview and throughout the cycle.
COMPLETE THE DONOR PROFILE
You can complete the Donor Application HERE. Selected Profile information is shared with the intended parents so they can “get to know you” without ever meeting. It asks questions about physical characteristics, education, personal and family history, and interests.
During the interview, an in-depth explanation of the donation process is provided including risks, side effects of the medications and procedure, benefits, screening and testing performed, and compensation. All your questions will be answered at this time as well. We, at TFAFC, take great pride in knowing we have fully informed donors and intended parents.
PROSPECTIVE DONOR SCREENING
Unlike donor programs at other clinics, we have donors complete a thorough medical and psychological screening before they are available for matching with intended parents. Donors who complete this screening are added to our Donor Registry and available for a donation cycle.
Additional genetic and infectious disease testing is completed immediately before the donation cycle to comply with FDA regulations and maintains the high standard of care our donors and intended parents expect.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT EGG DONATION
Does it hurt?
Many donors find the injections (fertility medications) to be well tolerated with only minor redness or bruising at the injection site. Immediately before the egg retrieval, there is often a feeling of fullness and some mild cramping when the ovaries are enlarged. These symptoms may continue for a few days after the egg retrieval as well. The egg retrieval itself is painless as you sleep (IV sedation) during the 20-30 minute procedure. Pain medication is prescribed, as needed, after the retrieval for your comfort. All symptoms resolve by the start of the next period.
Will the type of birth control I use interfere with me being a donor?
- You can be a donor if you use: birth control pills, Nuvaring, any IUD, condoms, abstinence or have your “tubes tied”. Donors are asked to briefly discontinue use of the pill during the prospective donor screening- to assess your fertility potential- and during the donation cycle. Donors using Nuvaring also briefly discontinue use during the prospective donor screening and may use the Nuvaring during a donation cycle.
- If you use Depo-Provera or Norplant, it is more difficult to be a donor. The norplant must be removed to assess for fertility potential and then again during the donation cycle. For both Depo-Provera and Norplant, your periods must resume and be regular before you can be a donor.
I’ve had an abortion or miscarriage, can I be a donor?
Yes, you may donate if a prior pregnancy ended in abortion or miscarriage.
I’ve never been pregnant, can I be a donor?
Yes, while a prior pregnancy is desirable, you may be an egg donor if you have not been pregnant.
What is the compensation?
- The donor is compensated for her time, missed work/school, commitment to attend all appointments, to follow all instructions, and for any discomfort and potential risk (low) of injury from the egg retrieval. Payment is not dependent of the number of eggs retrieved. The compensation is $3000+ and is paid immediately following the egg retrieval procedure. Compensation increases (up to $5000) with subsequent donation cycles if a pregnancy resulted in a prior donation cycle. The IRS does not consider this compensation a gift and must be reported. A 1099 Form will be sent to each donor in January following the egg donation.
- There is no cost to you for the medications, lab tests, monitoring, or egg retrieval.
How much work/school will I miss?
Troché Fertility part of Advanced Fertility Care is respectful of the donor’s time and work/school commitments. Ultrasound appointments for monitoring follicle development (3-4) are scheduled in the morning and usually last under 30 minutes. Appointments for FDA testing and the medication class are scheduled at a convenient time when possible. The day of egg retrieval is the only full day of work/school that you will miss.
How many times may I donate?
Present guidelines state you may donate up to 6 times in your lifetime.
How long must I wait before donating again?
We recommend you wait at least 1 month between donations. Back-to-back donation cycles put you at a higher risk for complications.
Are there any restrictions during the donation cycle?
- Abstinence Donors must abstain from sexual intercourse once the fertility medications are started and until the following menstrual period. The donor is very fertile during this time and abstaining prevents unintended pregnancy and decreases the risk of complications and discomfort.
- Exercise We encourage all donors to be physically fit and active. Once the fertility medications are started and until the next menstrual period, we recommend donors refrain from strenuous or excessive exercise for their comfort and to decrease the risk of medical complications. Mild to moderate exercise (walking, biking, etc.) is encouraged. Once the menstrual period begins after the egg retrieval, the donor is free to resume a more strenuous exercise program.
- Travel With the recent outbreak of Zika virus and the resulting catastrophic birth defects that can result when a pregnant woman is infected, there is a concern the Zika virus could possibly be spread through donor eggs. We ask our donors to avoid travel to areas with active infection such as Florida, Texas, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Singapore.
Will I meet the intended parents?
Our egg donation program is an anonymous one, so there is no contact or meeting between the parties. Any future contact between the donor and intended parents is conducted through TFAFC until the laws change.
Do I have any responsibility for a child born from my egg donation?
The donor has no parental, custodial, emotional, legal or financial obligations to any embryos, fetuses, or child(ren) created or born from an egg donation.
What if I have a tattoo and/or piercings?
Donors must wait until any body piercing has healed (usually 8 weeks) before donating. There is no waiting period for a tattoo if sterile instruments and ink were used. Because of the risk of infectious disease, if sterile instruments were not used for the tattoo or piercing, the donor must wait 1 year before donating.
What about vaccines?
Many vaccinations require a short waiting period (2-4 weeks) after the vaccination. We recommend scheduling routine immunizations for the month following a donation cycle. Vaccinations with wait periods include: Chicken Pox, Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR), Tetanus, and Smallpox. The flu shot has no wait period.
Why do intended parents need a donor?
Egg donors have been helping women who are experiencing premature menopause, have poor egg quality or whose eggs carry a genetic defect. Also, some intended parents don’t have a female partner or the woman has had her ovaries surgically removed.
If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact Allison, our Donor Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your interest in becoming an Egg Donor and helping an infertile couple complete their family. It is truly a precious gift you are considering giving to another.