What is Egg Donation?
In egg donation, eggs are borrowed from a young
woman (less than 33 yrs of age) called the donor, with her
consent. These eggs are then fertilized with the sperms of
the husband of the recipient woman and the resultant embryo
(the earliest form of the baby), is inserted into the womb
of the recipient. The success rate of this procedure is in
the region of 30 to 40%. In fact, many women till the age
of 50-55 have become pregnant by this technique. You will
be surprised that the oldest woman pregnant by this procedure
is 69 year old
, residing in Italy. At Babies And Us, the
oldest women who has conceived with this technique is 62 years
of age. This is probably the oldest woman to have become
pregnant, in India.
Infertility India is an anonymous egg donation centre
that provides personal attention and support to both egg donor
and recipient. Check the online information about Egg Donation
Clinic, Egg Donation & Egg Donation Centre in India. Please
Who can qualify for Egg Donation?
In this day and age more and more career oriented
women are getting married late in life. By the time they start
planning to have children, they are nearing the fourth decade
of their life (40 years). Fortunately, at this age, many women
can conceive naturally. However nearly 10 to 15% women fail
to conceive within a year's time. These women who are more
than 37-40 years of age then resort to treatment of infertility
by their gynecologist. If they still do not become pregnant
they take help of newer technologies like IVF
- In Vitro Fertilization (test-tube baby) or
- Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm
Women after the age of 40 tend to have fewer eggs in their
ovaries or the quality of the eggs they produce may be poor.
Thus, even new technologies like IVF and ICSI may not ensure
a successful pregnancy. Furthermore, after the age of 40 to
42, many women stop producing eggs as they enter the stage
of Perimenopause (decreased periods) or menopause (stoppage
of periods). Till now, such women could only have a baby through
the wonderful route of adoption. However, in the last ten
years, a new technique of egg donation has come as a blessing
to many such women.
In India, preference is given to younger couples
to adopt children. Couples over the age of 45 can adopt, but
find it difficult to do so, because of Governmental preference
for younger parents. Such couples can tremendously benefit
by egg donation.
Egg donation can also be perfomed on women who have
had multiple cycles of test-tube baby (IVF or ICSI) and have
still failed to conceive and become pregnant.
Besides elderly or menopausal women, egg donation
can be done in younger women whose ovaries have prematurely
failed or in young women who have undergone radiation or chemotherapy
for cancer. Radiation or chemotherapy destroys the eggs and
hence these women have a failure of their ovaries.
Egg donation is also used in patients who are carrying
major chromosomal defects so that they do not pass the genetic
defect to their children.
Patients suffering from severe Tuberculosis and
also produce poor quality eggs and hence can be treated by
How are the Donors screened?
Generally, eggs are borrowed from healthy women less than
30-35 years of age and who are not suffering from any illness
or genetic disorders. These young women, also called donors,
are specially screened for AIDS and Hepatitis. Their family
history is taken, to rule out any genetic problems. The donor
can be married or unmarried. However, married donors with
children would be preferable, primarily because they will
have established their ability to bare children.
How is the procedure done?
The Babies And Us staff will coordinate the cycles of the
donor and recipient to accomplish a fresh embryo transfer
whenever possible. Synchronization of cycles includes using
a series of medications to facilitate a hospitable uterine
environment for the transfer of embryos. During egg donation,
the donor is given injections to produce many eggs. When these
eggs are ripe, she is given a short anesthesia and the eggs
are removed from inside the vagina without giving a cut on
the abdomen. The donor can return home three to four hours'
after the procedure. The eggs are then fertilized with the
recipient's husband's sperms in the laboratory, either by
IVF or ICSI and kept in the incubator for two days.
Incase the recipient's husband's sperm is of poor quality;
the eggs can be fertilized by the technique of Intra Cytoplasmic
Sperm Injection (ICSI). Two days later, a four-celled embryo
is formed. Three days later, a eight-celled embryo is formed
or five days later a multi-celled Blastocyst
is formed. This embryo (small baby) is then transferred back
to the womb either at the four cell, eight cell or the Blastocyst
30 to 40% of such women will become pregnant. Incase they
fail to become pregnant they can have a repeat egg donation
cycle. Many women undergo two to four cycles and achieve their
goal of a child.
Who can be a Donor?
As easy as the method may sound, the biggest problem
faced by both doctors and patients is the availability and
source of egg donors. Ideally, the best donor would be her
own sister or near relative from her side (not from husband's
blood relative). We have done such cases successfully in Lilavati
Hospital. However, in this day and age of small nuclear families
many times it is difficult to get such donors.
Further more, it is very important that if there is a sister
donating eggs, there should be a very good mental understanding
between the sisters. The donor is not anonymous in this case,
and thus many a time there are possibilities of inter-personal
conflicts arising when the child becomes older.
We also accept recipients who have identified their own non-anonymous
The other and the most acceptable donor would be
a voluntary unrelated donor. There are a lot of women who
may just out of altruistic (philosophical) reasons donate
eggs to women who are suffering from the trauma of infertility.
It is important to popularize such egg donation. However,
even in an advanced society like Britain's, there is a great
dearth of voluntary egg donors, in spite of extensive advertisement
in the press.
By voluntary egg donation, we mean donation of the eggs by
the donor without expecting any monetary or other reward in
The third area, which can be a source of donors
can be a paid donor. You may be surprised that this is legal
in USA and young college girls are paid as much as US$6,000
for donating their eggs. But in a protestant society like
Britain's, this form of donation is considered illegal and
unethical. Even in the Indian society, where there is no law
on egg donation at present, such kind of paid donation may
not be socially and culturally acceptable. Clinics in India
do not practice paid donation.
Recently the Govt of India has appointed Indian Council of
Medical Research to legalize infertility practice in this
country including that of egg donation, embryo donation, semen
donation & surrogacy. The ICMR has legalised paid egg donation
and surrogacy. Our unit at BabiesAndUs fertility IVF ICSI
centre has just started doing some degree of paid egg donation
based on the ICMR draft.
In all the groups of related, voluntary or paid donors, there
is a certain degree of risk the donor is exposed to. The donor
is given multiple injections to produce eggs, as well as a
shot anesthetic. She is also exposed to the risk of surgical
Hence, there evolved a new concept of shared egg
donation which started in Britain but is now popular in the
USA and also in India. There are many young women who are
infertile due to other reasons and who also need the procedure
of IVF or ICSI.
However, they cannot afford to spend money for these procedures.
Many of these women produce 8 to 10 eggs during their treatment.
These patients are asked to share some of their extra eggs
with the recipient. This is done by taking the informed consent
of the young woman. In return, a part of the expense of medical
treatment of the young woman is borne by the recipient. Thus,
both the donor as well as the recipient who need IVF, are
benefited, without any extra amount of risk to the donor.
The anonymity of both-the donor and the recipient- is maintained
so that they don't know each other. With the help of this
technique, many young women who cannot afford IVF can mother
a child. The same goes for elderly women who can afford IVF
and can have a child.
The process of egg sharing is an excellent example of symbiotic
relationship between women, one with a physical need and one
with a monetary need, with the ultimate common goal of bearing
a child. It is a safe, effective, successful, legal, ethical
and socially acceptable method of advanced reproductive technology.
We at the Babies And Us Fertility, IVF & ICSI Centre generally
indulge in family related donors or egg sharing.
We hope that more and more voluntary donors will come forth,
to help needy infertile patients become pregnant.
What is the age limit of the recipient?
In general, any woman with a medical or genetic indication
for using an egg donor can be a recipient, if there are no
medical contraindications to pregnancy. Our current age limit
is 55 years. The decision to utilize donor eggs is made in
association with staff and consultants. If a male factor exists,
donor egg with ICSI is also available. Generally a psychiatrist
and a physician would assess a recipient. This is done to
gauge the mental and physical fitness of the patient. This
analysis is very important to withstand the pressures of childbirth.
What is the background of Recipients?
Babies And Us fertility Centre is renowned for its egg donation
techniques. Our patients hail from all over the country. They
are from different walks of life. Our unit facilities are
also utilized by NRI patients (Non Resident Indians) from
USA, UK, Africa, Middle East, Sri Lanka & Far East(Singapore).
We are also getting some patients from other nationalities
who hail from Asian countries..