How the Egg Donation Process Works

In a center for reproductive health, There are many factors that can affect how long the egg donation process will take and each journey can vary case by case. We cannot tell you how long your journey will last but in general, after matching with intended parents, you can expect anywhere from 4-6+ months. Below is the general process egg donors will complete.

THE FIRST STEP

1. Your application and pre screening process

The egg donation process and embryo transfer may feel complex at first and we want you to feel confident in knowing you have all the information you need before applying to donated eggs. Although it's not required, we offer a free 60-minute consultation where we will happily answer any questions or doubts you may have. This is a chance to learn more about our egg donation program and your options so you understand what to expect throughout the application process. Our consultations are currently held through video conferencing and are offered in either English or Spanish.

If you feel comfortable about continuing with the egg donation process, you will fill out our detailed online application. We need to get to know you and your preferences in greater detail in order to match you with the perfect intended parent(s). If your application is accepted, we’ll schedule a meeting with your Case Manager who may interview you to ask you further questions and initial screening. We’ll want to understand some of your preferences including which population groups you feel comfortable working with and the type of egg donation you wish to make. This will all be important for finding a compatible parent match. Your Case Manager will also walk you through expectations, and next steps, and will provide you with support throughout the remainder of your egg donation journey.  

 

In order to officially become a First Step egg donor, you must meet all of the requirements of our pre-screening egg donor application process. Requirements include passing a drug test, blood test an updated pap smear, family medical history, and undergoing a psychological evaluation to identify that you have good reproductive health.

THE PREPARATIONS

2. The matching process

At First Step, we put a lot of effort into finding the best match possible for the intended parent(s) and the egg donor. Unlike many agencies, we don’t just share a database of egg donor profiles for intended parents to look through on their own but rather, we personally review and hand-select potential matches that fit the predetermined preferences and criteria for both parties. We never want a match to feel forced thus we match based on the following criteria:

  • Type of egg donation preferred: You can agree with all 3 types or have a specific preference.
     

  • Personality fit: Compatibility matters particularly for those who want a known or semi-known donation because we want you to have a comfortable and natural relationship with your intended parent(s) throughout the entire process.
     

  • Geographic fit: You may prefer to reside close or further from your intended parent(s) depending on the type of donation you choose. 

Once both parties agree to a match, if it's a known or semi-known donation, we will set up a meeting to meet your intended parents through a video conference, with the assistance of your case manager, of the american society for reproductive.

3. Medical screening and legal contracts

After being matched, egg donors will begin the medical screening. While the pre-screening exists to ensure you are in generally healthy condition and a candidate for egg donation, the medical screening is a more in-depth evaluation of your fertility health that includes vaginal ultrasounds, testing for genetic diseases, family history, and other illnesses as required by the FDA. Additionally, you will complete a psychological evaluation. 

First Step will provide you with a health insurance policy to ensure you are covered should any issues arise related to your egg donation. Your intended parents cover the cost of insurance and any necessary doctor visits. 

If the medical screenings come back clear, each party will work with their legal representative to discuss risks and responsibilities, negotiate legal contracts, and draft up an agreement to be reviewed and approved by both parties. This is the time to discuss and mutually agree on any issues regarding the donation. An escrow account will be established for your donor compensation.  Your intended parent(s) escrow or trust account must be funded before the donation cycle can begin with the society for reproductive medicine.

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THE MEDICAL PROCESS

4. The egg donation cycle

Once everyone is in agreement and the contracts are signed, you will start to be prepped for the egg retrieval process at the IVF clinic your intended parents have chosen. From this point on, the general donation cycle will look something like this:

Medical Protocol

First Step with a reproductive endocrinologist will help you review all of the information provided by your physician to ensure you understand the medication instructions. It is important to follow all directions given by the physician exactly as instructed. Sometimes, this process has physical and emotional side effects  There may be some traveling involved depending on where you live and where the IVF clinic the intended parents chose is located. 

With the start of a fresh cycle, you will be given birth control pills to regulate hormones and injectable medication. At the end of the birth control cycle, you will begin taking FSH, which stimulates the ovaries to produce several eggs. Once ready, you will be given an HCG shot which will prepare the eggs for retrieval 36 hours later.

Egg retrieval

The egg retrieval process is done at the IVF clinic chosen by your intended parents and can take anywhere from 20-60 minutes. If you’re traveling, you’ll need between four and nine days for the retrieval to be complete. You may experience some mild discomfort in your abdominal region following the retrieval. Someone must drive you back home or to your hotel after the procedure. Discomfort should subside after 48 hours.

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Still have questions?

We understand that you may have a lot of questions about fertility centers and Vitro fertilization IVF or information about a poor egg. We welcome you to come to our team at any time for the support and answers you seek. We hope you choose egg donation and if you do, we hope your first step is with us in Miami Florida!