Egg Donor Process
The egg donor process is the miraculous convergence of science and medicine, developed over the last 25 plus years in response to the ever changing needs of those who wish, but would otherwise not be able, to create families. But without you, the egg donor, it is nothing. At J baby we have outlined below the basic flow chart of the egg donor’s journey as she works her way through the egg donation process. Because we believe it is our responsibility to insure that as a potential egg donor candidate you are fully informed before committing, we encourage you to read and ask questions now as a part of your decision-making process.
Step 1: Register and Complete the Application Process
So you have completed your due diligence and have decided that you want to become an egg donor. Fantastic! Now it times to see if you are a good match for our program. First register and answer a few brief questions which will quickly determine whether you are qualified to proceed to the application process. The bulk of the application is an in-depth, online questionnaire where you are asked in great detail about you and your family’s medical and genetic history which can help us red flag any potential issues before they become a problem down the line. You will also be asked a slew of questions that allows us to get to know more about you as a person, your goals and desires, your educational background, hobbies, any athletic or artistic talents, and what drives you as a person. We will also request that you download any pictures of yourself and your family.
Step 2: Interview and Approval
If all appears in order we will request an in-person interview (if local) or Skype so we can get to know each other a little bit better, answer any questions you may have, and make sure you fully understand the terms of the commitment that you will be required to make as an egg donor. Once we both feel comfortable that you are ready to proceed, we will ask you to sign a registration agreement with our agency which we will review with you in detail. All of the information you previously provided in the questionnaire along with your photos will be packaged into an online profile which can now be reviewed by the Intended Parents who have come to our website in search of a donor like yourself. Congratulations, you are now a member of the J baby family of egg donors!.
Step 3: You are Matched
Getting matched can take anywhere from a few days to a few months. There is no way to predict. Once a Future Parent has selected you as a tentative match from the pool of eligible egg donors, we will confirm your availability based on a timeline submitted by the I.P.’s (Intended Parents). Both parties will sign an Egg Donor Matching Agreement indicating your mutual desire to want to work with each other. By default, you will never know each other’s identities unless otherwise jointly agreed upon. We will review in detail with you the terms of this agreement.
Step 4: You are “Medically Cleared”
Before you can proceed to the actual egg donation procedure, you must be medically cleared by the doctor who is affiliated with an IVF clinic and who has been chosen by the IP’s to supervise the overall egg donation process. It is this doctor who retains the final authority to approve you as a qualified egg donor but not before ordering a battery of tests that are designed to reassure the Intended Parents that you are indeed an eligible candidate who can donate safely. In your initial consultation with the doctor, he or she will perform a physical exam consisting of a pelvic exam with pap smear and cervical cultures. Blood will be drawn and submitted to a lab for testing, according to FDA requirements, to rule out the possibility of unwittingly transmitting certain diseases such as HIV or Hepatitis. The doctor and the nurse coordinator, with whom you will also be working closely, will answer any questions you have about the procedure and explain any associated risks. Genetic testing and counseling will be ordered as well to ensure that you are not a carrier of certain genetic disorders that potentially could be passed on through your eggs. Finally, you will see a licensed psychologist who will talk with you and make sure you are comfortable with becoming an egg donor, as well as review of you and your family’s mental health history. Both a completed genetic and psychological report will be forwarded to the IVF doctor which he or she will consider, along with all the other data points, before issuing a formal medical clearance allowing you to become an egg donor. You are now ready to proceed to legal.
Step 6: Preparing for the Egg Retrieval Procedure
You will now begin taking medication to properly prepare you for the retrieval. Your nurse coordinator will become a very important part of your team in checking in with you frequently all the way up to the time of the retrieval. Your doctor will prescribe birth control pills to suppress the normal functioning of your ovaries. Shortly after stopping the birth control pills, you will also begin daily injections of follicle stimulating hormones (FSH), a process referred to as ovarian stimulation, designed to increase the production and maturation of more than the usual one egg produced per cycle. These injections are administered subcutaneously and typically start ten to fourteen days before retrieval. During ovarian stimulation you will be monitored closely through blood tests and ultrasound to ensure that your ovaries are responding well to the treatment and are not being overly stimulated. If you do not live locally to the IVF clinic, you will visit a satellite monitoring clinic located near your home for the first seven days of the cycle.
Step 7: The Egg Retrieval Procedure
When the ultrasound imaging shows that your eggs have sufficiently matured, you will be instructed to trigger ovulation with the injection of a hormone called HCG. The timing of this injection is extremely critical as it must occur a few days prior to the retrieval. At an appointed time you and your chosen companion will arrive at the IVF clinic and begin the Egg Retrieval Procedure which lasts about 15-30 minutes. You will be given a mild general anesthetic and your doctor, using a small ultrasound-guided needle inserted through the vagina, will aspirate, or suction, the eggs off the follicles of both ovaries one at a time. You will rest a few hours at the clinic before your companion escorts you back to your hotel room or home. Generally you will want to allow a good several days of low-key activity to ensure a full recovery before resuming your normal activities.
Step 8: You Receive Your Compensation
Your role as an egg donor has been completed. Your compensation, along with any expenses accrued, will be paid in acknowledgement of your kind investment of your time, effort and overall commitment as a J baby egg donor. We thank you very much!.