- Jennifer "Jay" Palumbo
Who Should Consider Donor Eggs?
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash
Whether it’s a diagnosis such as Diminished Ovarian Reserve or Premature Ovarian Failure, you’re in a same-sex male relationship or age, using an egg donor may be your best path to parenthood.
This blog provides an overview of fertility, your options, who donor eggs might be a fit for, and cost.
Overview of Fertility and Age
The majority of women are born with around two million eggs. This is known as an ovarian reserve. As you get older, your reserve will decrease. If you’re a healthy reproductive woman, your reserve will have reduced to approximately 300,000 eggs by your mid-twenties. While it can vary for everyone, the age thirty-five is when a woman’s egg quality and quantity begin to diminish. Women over the age of thirty have around a 20% chance of conceiving. By age forty, it can decline to a noteworthy 5%.
In addition, the CDC conducted research that showed that more and more women have children in their thirties than ever before. This means that exploring options like freezing your eggs for when you’re ready to start a family or needed the help of donor eggs should your ovarian reserve be a concern are two viable options.
Egg freezing, known as “oocyte cryopreservation,” is when eggs are retrieved from your ovaries, frozen, and then stored for potential later use. The freezing process is called vitrification, a “fast freeze” that preserves your eggs at the age you were at the time of the retrieval. This is a relatively new technology that has become available in the last decade. So, it’s possible you may not have been able to pursue it, or you were unaware it existed.
If you do not have frozen eggs and you’re having difficulty conceiving with your own, that’s when you can explore the donor egg option. Donated eggs are only accepted by women who pass a rigorous screening process and are usually between twenty-one to thirty-four. As we learned above, since age and fertility are related, that is the age range when eggs will potentially offer higher success rates when undergoing IVF.
Positives and Potential Concerns
Here are some of the potential concerns as well as several of the positives with using donor eggs:
The Positives To Using Donor Eggs:
· If you are a male couple same-sex couple, using an egg donor means one of you can be genetically tied to the child.
· If you are a female and have an egg quality issue but a male partner, you can still use his sperm with donor eggs to genetically be the father.
· With donor conception, you can still experience pregnancy, breastfeeding, and labor (as opposed to options like adoption or surrogacy).
· Some studies around epigenetics have shown how the baby is developing inside the birth mother’s body can be impacted by the prenatal environment. This includes everything from the intake of nutrients (protein, vitamins, minerals) to the embryonic fluid; the birth mother shares their blood flow, heart rhythm, and gene expression with the baby.
· Overall, success rates tend to be higher when using donor eggs.
Potential Concerns With Using Donor Eggs:
· Cost is always a factor. Donor Egg costs can range anywhere from $12,000 to $20,000 depending on how you procure them (fresh donor, frozen egg bank, a friend or family member, or something known as a “shared donor” are all options, and prices vary. EggFund can help with affording whichever path you take!
· Depending on your personal preferences religion, ethnic background, religion, or needs, it may take time to find an ideal match.
· While success rates are higher when using an egg donor, it still won’t guarantee that you’ll get pregnant immediately or at all.
· You may feel strongly about being genetically related to your child. However, it’s a personal decision, and you and your partner need to decide what’s best for you.
Affording Donor Eggs and Treatment
Whatever you decide, when it comes to financing, EggFund can help! We are a unique platform with the largest network of leading national lenders, and you can get matched with your pre-approved offers in 60 seconds. Click here to learn more.