Physical characteristics of the egg donor such as skin color, eye color, hair color and body build are matched closely as possible to the characteristics of the intended recipient couple.
In addition, ethnic background, physical traits, and blood group & Rh factor are matched as accurately as possible.
CRH has a large pool of donor’s oocytes and is usually able to meet most of the recipient’s wishes.
Most recipients undergoing a donor oocyte treatment cycle will receive Lupron, a medication used in women who still have periods to prevent the pituitary gland from releasing the hormones that usually stimulate the ovaries. This is required to synchronize both the recipient and the donor oocyte cycles.
After approximately two weeks of Lupron, the recipient will begin the two-week treatment with Estradiol Valerate, to prepare the uterine lining for implantation.
In addition, close to the time of embryo transfer the recipient will start the Progesterone supplementation, another hormone required for implantation of the developing embryos.
The hormonal treatment is continued until the pregnancy test is performed. If a pregnancy is established, the hormonal treatment will continue through the first trimester.
During the treatment cycle both partners should not smoke nor take more than one alcoholic beverage per day, eat healthy food and vitamin supplementation. They should not take any additional medication other than the prescribed by the CRH.
2. Oocyte Donor
The oocyte donor will undergo ovarian stimulation, which requires the use of fertility drugs such as Bravelle, Menopur, Follistim Pen, Gonal- F Pen and other commercially available products.
This treatment is known as superovulation, and it is used in conjunction with Lupron. To assist in evaluating the response to the superovulation treatment and predicting the time of the expected ovulation, the oocyte donor will be carefully monitored. This is accomplished by several blood testing and vaginal ultrasound examinations.
When the most ovarian follicles have reached adequate development the oocyte donor will receive human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), an injection to produce the simultaneous development of several oocytes and to control the timing of ovulation, so the oocytes can be retrieved before they are spontaneously released.
The oocyte retrieval is usually scheduled 36 hours after HCG administration.
3. Oocyte Retrieval
The oocyte retrieval is conducted by ultrasound-guided transvaginal follicle aspiration, under mild conscious sedation. For the procedure, a vaginal transducer is placed in the vagina, and then an aspiration needle is inserted alongside the transducer and through the upper part of the vagina directly into each large ovarian follicle. The fluid contained in the follicles is withdrawn and collected into test tubes and examined under the microscope in the IVF laboratory for the presence of the oocytes.
4. Sperm Collection
The day of oocyte retrieval, a sample donor from the recipient’s partner or designated semen donor will have to be available to the IVF laboratory for processing.
5. In Vitro Fertilization
The mature donor oocytes are combined with the sperm (insemination) about six hours after the oocyte retrieval. If the recipient couple is diagnosed with male factor infertility, then another procedure called Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) will be required to assist the sperm to fertilize the oocyte. Each oocyte is observed the following morning for fertilization.
The normally fertilized oocytes are then returned to the incubator for an additional 24 hours to allow cell division (cleavage) to occur, and thereafter the fertilized oocyte is called embryo.
6. Embryo Transfer
If the embryos have developed satisfactorily in the laboratory, up to four of them are selected and placed in the woman’s uterus three to five days after the oocyte retrieval. The embryo transfer is a simple painless procedure performed without anesthesia. A speculum is placed into the vagina to visualize the opening into the womb. The embryos are then loaded into a narrow catheter, which it is gently introduced into the uterine cavity, where the embryos will be released for implantation.
The patient is required to stay at the CRH in the transfer room for about one hour, and to limit all her activities for the following 96 hours. A pregnancy test is done approximately ten days after embryo replacement. If a pregnancy ensues, then the Progesterone supplementation is continued for ten more weeks.
7. Embryo Cryopreservation
Any excess of fertilized oocytes and/or normally developing embryos may be cryopreserved and stored for the patient’s future use at the patient’s request.
8. Outcome of Oocyte Donation
Excellent pregnancy rates are reported with oocyte donation; these rates are typically much higher than those for IVF-ET without donation. Possible explanations include the fact that most donors are not infertile and may have higher quality oocytes than infertile patients. Secondly, the recipient endometrium is not hyperstimulated, and may be more receptive to implantation. For these reasons, usually three donated embryos are replaced at any one time.
With high quality embryos, delivered pregnancy rates above 40% have been reported
We acknowledge that participation in an In Vitro Fertilization Cycle with donor oocyte is a complex procedure. It requires additional time than a routine In Vitro Fertilization cycle because it requires matching of the physical characteristics of the recipient with a donor, preparation of both treatment cycles, financial counseling for the recipient and have the consent forms of both parties explained and signed.
CRH is committed to your success and will lead you through the process towards a successful pregnancy.