Finding a Sperm Donor from a trusted Sperm Bank can be a big trouble these days. But at Apollo Fertility, Donor program is conducted as a part of the fertility treatment and can help many who are unable to become parents naturally. There are two donor programs, namely egg donation, and sperm donation. Egg donation is a process where a woman donates her eggs to another woman, who are unable to conceive. And, in sperm donation, the man donates his sperm for the same reason.
People may choose to use donor sperm for a variety of reasons. If the male partner is sterile and therefore unable to provide a sperm sample for use in intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF), single women and lesbian couples who want children may take advantage of donor sperm to help them have the children they want. It may also be used to avoid passing on a genetic disease or disorder that is carried by the male.
Why is it performed?
There are various reasons why people opt for egg or sperm donor. They are;
- Premature Ovarian Failure – This is a condition where the menopause starts earlier than it is supposed to, i.e. before the age of 40.
- Reduction in the ovarian reserve, i.e. the number of eggs in your system is of low quality and are depleting fast. This can also happen because of age as fertility takes a steep drop after the age of 40.
- If you want to avoid genetic diseases from passing on to your child.
- If you have a history of failed IVF treatments because of the quality of your eggs.
How is it performed?
Choosing a Donor
This is the first step towards conception. You may opt for an anonymous Sperm donor from a sperm bank. Counseling is an important part of this process so that all concerns and questions are addressed, and all aspects of this treatment are considered.
The Insemination Process
A donor’s sperm can be used with IVF or IUI. You will receive fertility medications to prepare your eggs for retrieval. Once retrieved, your eggs will be combined with the donor sperm and any resulting embryos will then be transferred back to your uterus for implantation.
Success with a Sperm Donor
Women under the age of 35 with no history of fertility problems have the best chance of becoming pregnant with quality sperm from a good sperm donor, Because it is possible to do one to two inseminations per cycle, women who fail to conceive after several cycles may be evaluated for fertility problems.
Egg donation is a process in which a young (less than 33 years), healthy woman donates eggs for the assisted reproduction purpose.
Steps to becoming an egg donor
Donating eggs is one of the most powerful and rewarding decisions a woman can make. It is our responsibility to guide you about the process and concerns and make you feel comfortable for a wonderful experience.
If you are looking forward to participating in the donor program, you will have to apply in writing.
Then you will have to pass through various examinations to assess your physical and psychological health. To become an egg donor, you should be:
- Between the age of 18 and 32
- Having regular menstrual periods
- Having both ovaries
- Not currently using psychoactive drugs
- Not having a history of substance abuse
- Having a family history free of inheritable genetic disorders
You should undergo a physical exam and laboratory tests to detect hormone levels and infectious diseases.
Your doctor would screen you for sexually transmitted infections such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, syphilis, gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and cytomegalovirus (CMV). In addition, your blood type and Rh factor also will be assessed. Then you will have to attend an interview regarding verification of age, health status, history of the IVF cycle, etc. Only then you are eligible to be matched with a suitable recipient couple.
Which criteria make me eligible for a ‘Recipient’?
A recipient is a woman who receives the embryo for which the egg was donated by a donor. This embryo is implanted into the recipient’s uterus. You would be eligible as a recipient if you meet any of the following criteria:
•Failure to conceive after receiving multiple cycles of IVF-ICSI
•Advanced maternal age
•Younger women in whom ovaries have prematurely failed
Before the procedure
Your doctor would take a complete medical history and prescribe you certain medical screening tests for infectious diseases, diagnostic procedures for uterine evaluation.
Your doctor would screen you for sexually transmitted infections such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, syphilis, gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and cytomegalovirus (CMV), and Blood Type and Rh factor.
Egg donation process
a. Usually, the egg donation process takes one month in which egg retrieval take few minutes. The procedure starts with informing the donor about the procedures and treatments she is undergoing.
b. The next step is screening the donor and the recipient which involves:
- Obtaining a complete medical history
- Genetic, psychological, and physical screening
- Physical screening includes a physical exam
c. Then the physician correlates the donor menstrual cycle with the recipient cycle. The next step is synchronization. The recipient’s uterine lining should be ready for implantation at the same time the donor’s eggs are retrieved and fertilized, so synchronizing is necessary for the donor and recipient. This is performed by administration of birth control pills.
d. After this process, the donor is given fertility medications or undergoes an IVF cycle (to stimulate the growth and maturation of eggs), monitored by ultrasound and blood tests for over a period of 10-14 days or till the eggs are ready for egg retrieval. Meanwhile, the recipient will be taking a different medication to prepare the uterine lining for implantation of the embryos.
e. After the egg retrieval, the eggs are fertilized in the laboratory with the sperm from the recipient’s partner or sperm donor and obtaining a resultant embryo. The resultant embryo is implanted in the uterus of the recipient.
Donors are reimbursed by the recipient for specific expenses related to the donation. These expenses may include testing and screening (e.g. obligatory blood tests) as well as expenses involved in transferring the embryos to the recipient and costs for thawing the embryo.
Before initiating the donation process, all the details regarding reimbursement should be agreed upon in the writing form and detailed in a contractual agreement.
Sperm donation is a process that involves the donation of sperm by a donor who is referred to as the sperm donor. The sperms may be donated directly to the intended parent or through a sperm bank. The sperm bank is a facility at which human sperm is collected from the donor, stored, and used for women who need donor sperm to achieve pregnancy.
Am I eligible to be a donor?
•You should be between 18 to 45 years of age, should be healthy and have willing to undergo rigorous testing.
Screening of donors
- Sperm banks screen donors for genetic diseases, chromosomal abnormalities, and sexually transmitted infections.
- This procedure includes a quarantine period. First, the samples are frozen and stored for at least 6 months. After this duration, the donor is re-tested for infections to identify if there are any infections developed during the period.
The sperm donated is inseminated into a female artificially by assisted reproductive technology (ART) techniques to achieve pregnancy.
At Apollo, we assist you in every process of donor program starting from medical review to birth.
The greatest advantage of egg or sperm donation is the ability to conceive. But, apart from that;
•You will avoid passing on a serious genetic condition to your child (if you have any)
•Age will no longer remain a factor. You will be able to conceive even after 35.
•Even if your medical factor interferes with your pregnancy, the donor program helps you overcome it.
There are no such risks when it comes to the donor program. However, it is said that when a woman uses the donated egg, it may sometimes lead to high blood pressure, the low birth weight of the baby, premature delivery, and cesarean delivery.
When it comes to using a sperm donor, it is important you visit a well-established clinic, so that you get what you ask for. Some banks create misleading profiles or don’t do any background checks. But, with known names, this will not be the case. Also, some donors and recipients are simply not compatible. Your body can reject or kill the sperm, delaying pregnancy.
The unforeseen congenital disease can become a concern like in any other pregnancy, despite undergoing several tests.
Q. How old should one be to donate eggs?
A. The minimum age is 21 and maximum 30.
Q. Is it painful to donate eggs?
A. The experience differs from person to person. Some experience an uncomfortable feeling, cramping, and bloating. With proper rest and medication, one will feel better soon enough.
Q. What about privacy?
A. If you wish to maintain anonymity, it is respected and either party will not meet each other. The legal team will draw contracts, according to your concerns.
Q. Are donors paid?