Why does anyone give of themselves when they don’t need to? This is a heavy philosophical question almost impossible to cover in a limited space, but one good answer is “compassion.” Many of us feel the need to provide help to those in need, though this need can take on many forms. When talking about being an egg donor, that need is providing the opportunity to start a family to people who may not otherwise have that opportunity due to certain medical conditions or simple biology.
Good intentions are a wonderful thing to have. However, some of them are conditional. When you decide to be an egg donor, there are many boxes you’ll need to check, so to speak, in order to be approved as a good candidate. Providing someone with the ability to have children is a tremendous responsibility that can’t be taken lightly. Here is what you need to know about the egg donation process.
Who you’re helping
Egg donations can help people in a variety of scenarios. For example, same-sex male couples who wouldn’t be able to produce children without the assistance of an egg donor and surrogate. Many women can also benefit from egg donations if they suffer with fertility issues. Early menopause, egg quality issues, and genetically transmittable diseases may all warrant the use of an egg donor when the woman’s own eggs aren’t suitable for a successful pregnancy.
Who is a good candidate for egg donation?
Becoming an egg donor is fairly rigorous. Unfortunately, not everyone who may want to be an egg donor qualifies to actually donate. That’s because there are some strict criteria that need to be met in order to be confirmed as an egg donor. For example, egg donors must be between the ages of 21 and 30. Egg donors must also undergo an in-depth health assessment. While physical health needs to be assessed, mental health and social factors will also play a key part in qualifying to be a donor.
What’s the health assessment like?
The health assessment for becoming an egg donor will take a deep dive into your medical history. This will also include family health problems as genetic risks are of great importance when donating eggs. Any serious conditions that are genetic in nature and at high risk of being passed down will be considered during candidacy. Screening for infectious diseases will also occur. These include screening for HIV, Hepatitis B and C, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis. A urine drug screening will also occur. A psychological evaluation will also take place to ensure all donors are of a sound and stable mind. Additionally, many mental health issues are also genetic in nature.
The egg donation timeline
Successfully completing the health assessment isn’t the only prerequisite to being an egg donor. Actually being able to donate an egg isn’t a simple process. You can’t just show up for an appointment for the procedure. In order to be an egg donor, you must also be capable and willing to give yourself daily injections of hormones. These daily injections need to be performed for about two weeks. There will also be several appointments that will need to be kept in order to monitor the egg stimulation process.
The egg retrieval process
Once the egg stimulation via hormone injection process is complete after a two-week period, you’ll have to come in for the egg removal process. The procedure only takes about 20 minutes and you’ll be sedated throughout for your comfort. The eggs are gently removed via the use of a needle that is inserted into the ovaries. Anesthesia will be used, but it is a relatively simple outpatient procedure. Once you’ve fully recovered from the anesthesia, you’ll be able to go home and return to normal activity in the next several days. Overall, the procedure is simple and takes little time to complete.
Many women think about becoming egg donors at one time or another when they’re young. Your reasons may vary, but no matter what your motivation is, you’d be providing a great help to someone you don’t even know. That’s a beautiful thing. As you’ve seen, though, the egg donation process isn’t that simple nor is it cut and dry. A lot goes into it, and that’s not just talking about the screening portion. Providing the spark of life is a tremendous responsibility and doctors take it seriously, so they can provide their patients with the best care and outcomes. That’s why if you’ve been considering egg donation, book an appointment online today to get the process started. Dr. Sepilian can go over the process with you and get you started to see if you’re a good candidate.