So you’re thinking about becoming an egg donor. It’s not a decision to make lightly, so you want to do plenty of research on it first. But as you explore what egg donation is all about, you may experience information overload. So many people have things to say online, and you’re not sure what’s factual and what’s bogus. What are the benefits of donating eggs? Equally as important, what are the risks? Balancing the pros and cons of egg donation will help you figure out whether egg donation is for you.
Pros of Egg Donation
You’re Transforming Someone’s Life for The Better
Most of our egg donor recipients are couples who want nothing else than to conceive a baby but are suffering from infertility. More likely than not, they have dealt with tremendous heartache from countless, expensive, and failed fertility treatments. Their only hope to conceive a child is by using an egg donor.
You can only imagine the tough hardships these women and men have endured. But if you are accepted as an egg donor, and decide to move forward, someone out there will receive life-changing news: the recipient may have finally found the missing piece to building a family.
You’ll Earn Substantial Compensation
Egg donors receive compensation upon completing a cycle. If eligible, you can complete up to six egg donation cycles across your lifetime and earn thousands of dollars each time. You can learn what our compensation per cycle is by starting an application.
You Don’t Need to Pay Anything to Become an Egg Donor
Do you have to pay anything to donate? Nope! We cover all expenses related to your donation.
You’ll Receive a Free Health Screening
As part of the screening process, you’ll receive thousands of dollars worth of medical and genetic testing – all for free. This includes fertility, genetic, and infectious disease testing.
You Can Earn Financial Bonuses
If you enter our egg donation program, you’ll be eligible to receive a couple of bonuses. Just by going through our screening process, you’ll earn up to $500 just for completing our testing requirements. But there’s more! Once you become a donor, we’ll invite you into our referral program. Simply invite friends to become an egg donor at Fairfax EggBank. If they end up becoming an egg donor, you’ll receive $1,000 once they complete a cycle. There are no limits to the number of referrals you can make, and you earn another $1,000 each time another referral completes a cycle.
We’ll Insure You
Don’t have medical insurance? Not to worry, we’ll fully insure you to cover medical treatments related to your egg donation.
You Don’t Need to Worry About Long Term Effects
There are no studies that show those who donate eggs are at increased risk for experiencing infertility issues, cancer, or premature menopause. “There are no long-term adverse risks of IVF or egg donation,” said Richard J. Paulson, past president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), which is the governing body of reproductive medicine.
You Won’t Have Any Legal Obligations to the Donor-Conceived Child
You assume no responsibility or liability for any child conceived by your donation. Likewise, you’ll have no rights to any child conceived by your donation. (Though, after your donation if you’re diagnosed with any serious medical issue that may be genetic, you’ll need to contact us.)
The Egg Donation Retrieval Procedure is Easy
Many aspiring donors are afraid of the procedure – but it’s quick and painless. It’s a simple outpatient procedure that takes about 20 minutes while you’re sedated with anesthesia (though we’ll instruct you to relax for the rest of the day). If you’re like most of our donors, you’ll resume normal activities the very next day.
At Fairfax EggBank, You’ll be Treated with the Utmost Care and Expertise
We are one of the largest and most experienced in the world, and a contributor to that is that we take meticulous care of our donors and minimize the risk of complications occurring. You’ll learn quickly that our team is responsive and cares about you and your success.
You’ll also meet with a mental health professional and work with a dedicated donor coordinator. Their goal will be to inform you about the process and counsel you carefully. They’ll answer all pressing questions you have so that you can decide whether you want to become a donor.
Cons of Egg Donation
The Process Can Be Involved
There are various tests and medical appointments involved in egg donation. You’ll need to commit several months to the process. On the positive side, if you choose a frozen donor egg bank such as ours, the process is a lot quicker and straightforward. While donating through an egg donor agency can take around a year or longer (depending on how long it takes for a recipient to choose you), at Fairfax EggBank you can complete the process within five months over the course of 10-14 appointments. We’re also flexible. You can schedule early morning appointments so that you don’t need to miss work or school. The only day you’ll need to take off is for your egg donation retrieval.
You May Experience Some Side Effects
Side effects from medications can vary for donors. Some experience nothing, while others experience some. If you were to experience side effects, they might include bloating, moodiness, cramping, aching, PMS-like symptoms, headaches, nausea, hot flashes or breast tenderness.
There is a Rare Chance of Complications
As with any other medical procedure, there is the rare chance of a medical complication occurring. However, they occur in less than 1% of individuals.
- Infection: For the egg retrieval, we’ll use a very tiny needle to aspirate the follicles that are stimulated within the ovary to collect the eggs (don’t worry, you won’t feel a thing since you’ll be sedated by anesthesia). We use sterile techniques so the risk of infection is extremely rare. You’ll also receive antibiotics to help further reduce the risk.
- Ovarian Torsion: Ovarian torsion is when the ovary can twist on itself. If this happens, you’d need immediate surgery to fix the position. During the donation process, your ovaries will become larger and heavier than their normal size due to the stimulation of multiple follicles. Strenuous activity or exercise can increase the risk of ovarian torsion. Therefore, you should refrain from this type of exercise during the donation period.
- Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS): Some women over-respond to the fertility hormones, causing a fluid shift. Fluid can typically build up in the abdominal cavity causing fullness, discomfort, and excess bloating. The amount of fluid can range from a very small amount to a substantial amount. If a significant amount of fluid is present, we will do a procedure similar to the egg retrieval in to remove that fluid and relieve the discomfort. More commonly it’s usually a small amount of fluid that your own body will reabsorb in a few days. This risk will not pose any danger or long term effects.
- Pregnancy: You’ll be very fertile during the donation cycle, so during that time and most especially just after the egg retrieval, you’ll have a high risk of becoming pregnant. The risk is not only of becoming pregnant, but becoming pregnant with multiples. Abstinence for about two to three weeks is the best and safest way to avoid this.
We Protect Your Anonymity, but Technological Advancements May Pose Risk
Facial recognition technology is advancing and affordable genetic testing kits like 23and Me are becoming more widespread. Though the risk is minimal, these technologies have the potential to compromise your anonymity. Fairfax EggBank’s mental health professional will counsel you thoroughly on the reality and risks
With that said, Fairfax EggBank goes through great lengths to protect your anonymity (unless you choose to be an ID Option donor, where you consent to share your contact information with any donor-conceived child upon the child reaching the age of 18). If you become a donor, we’ll carefully review and redact any personally identifiable information. If a recipient wishes to view your photos, we’ll pose legal restrictions and a consent form for them to sign.
As you can see, there are many pros and cons of egg donation. We encourage you to research egg donation thoroughly so that you can make an informed decision.
For more information, please browse through our site. You can also send us a message so that a donor coordinator can answer any specific questions you have.