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egg-donor-icon-red Egg Donor

Egg Donor FAQs

Are there any time limits between having a baby and donating eggs?

Clinics will want menstruation to have returned and be back to normal (whatever ‘normal’ means for you) for about three months before they will consider you as a donor. In reality, it’s usually longer than three months because other factors such as tiredness and work can affect things.

I am breastfeeding, can I still donate my eggs?

Clinics will want menstruation to have returned and be back to normal (whatever ‘normal’ means for you) for about three months before they will consider you as a donor. Clinics prefer breastfeeding to have finished for about three months before they will consider you. This is to ensure that your physical body is back to normal. In reality, it’s usually longer than three months though because other factors such as tiredness and work can affect things.

Do I need to use contraception if I am donating eggs? Is there any type of contraception I can or can’t use?

If you are sexually active with a man you will need to use contraception during your donation treatment cycle because you will be highly fertile while on the medication. Your clinic will discuss the best form of contraception – usually the condom. Other types of contraception such as the coil or implant will be removed before the donation process begins.

Can I have sex when I’m donating my eggs?

Yes but be aware that the medication you are required to take during your donation cycle will make you highly fertile. Discuss your contraception options with the clinic you are donating through.

Is there a limit on the number of times I can donate my eggs?

There’s no limit as such on the number of times you can donate your eggs but in reality the limit will be when the maximum of 10 families has been reached from your donations. Egg donors can have up to three recipients per treatment cycle.

Will donating my eggs affect my fertility?

It can do. There is about a 1% risk of infertility resulting from donating eggs and this is usually related to overstimulation of the ovaries (Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS)). However, you will be monitored frequently and your medication will be adjusted accordingly. If there are any concerns that you may be experiencing OHSS, the donation process will be stopped.

I’ve had one or more terminations, will this affect whether I can be an egg donor?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can surrounding the circumstances of your terminations so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

I’ve had one or more miscarriages, will this affect whether I can be an egg donor?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can surrounding the circumstances of your losses so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

My partner and children don’t want me to donate, does this matter?

Although technically you could probably still donate in reality it’s likely that you won’t be able to. Clinics would want to explore why you’d want to go ahead without your family’s support – this would probably be taken to a clinic ethics meeting to discuss and the chances are that you wouldn’t be allowed to go ahead.

I have recently had cosmetic surgery/other cosmetic, facial procedures such as botox, dermabrasion, can I still donate?

It’s important that you give your clinic as much information as possible about the nature of the procedures that have taken place. Your clinic will be able to advise you what their individual policy is.

I have endometriosis, can I still donate?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can about your condition so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

I have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, can I still donate?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can about your condition so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

I’m over 35 and would like to donate to a friend or family member, can I still do this?

Possibly but this is something you’ll need to discuss with your clinic. ‘Exceptional Circumstances’ guidelines do exist within the Code of Practice Framework and this gives clinics flexibility if they need it in certain circumstances. Clinics will make any decision based on the individual situation.

I have had postnatal depression, can I still donate?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can about your condition so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

Can I dye my hair when donating?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

Can I shellac my nails when donating?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I have recently had a piercing/tattoo/acupuncture. Can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I have received donated blood/organ/bone marrow. Can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I am gay. Can I donate?

Yes. Regardless of sexuality, all donors are screened and tested for the same medical conditions. Recipients are made aware of their donor’s sexuality and can choose their donor accordingly.

I have recently visited countries outside of Europe. Can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I have been told that I am not eligible to give blood. Can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I have had surgery recently. Can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I am adopted. Can I still donate?

Yes. Adoption is not a barrier to donating. As long as you meet all the other requirements, being adopted won’t affect whether you’re accepted onto a donor programme.

Can I find out whether my donation was successful? When?

Yes. At any time following your donation you can ask your clinic about the outcome of your donations. Your clinic can tell you:

  • whether there have been any pregnancies
  • whether there have been any live birth(s)
  • years of birth
  • gender of any child(ren) born
  • number of children born.
Can I impose any conditions on who I donate to and the nature of my donation?

Yes but realistically imposing conditions can limit the number of times your donation can be used in treatments. Most donors’ conditions are connected to issues around religion and culture. In the case of known donation, the donation is conditional upon it being used by a particular recipient.

Are there any limits on how many children can be born from my donations?

There’s no limit as such on the number of children that can be born from your donations. However, only 10 families can be created from your donations.

Do I need to tell someone if I later discover I have some form of illness that could affect any children born from my donation?

Yes. You have a duty to inform your clinic.

Do I have to change my lifestyle at all to donate?

It’s recommended that you have a healthy lifestyle but your clinic will advise you of any specific changes you might need to make.

I smoke/vape, can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I drink alcohol, can I still donate?

Clinics have their own individual policies on this issue so check with the clinic you’re thinking about donating to for their most up-to-date advice.

I am overweight, can I still donate?

Yes, but clinics prefer your BMI to be under 30. This is because being overweight can affect general health and wellbeing, and this can affect how a potential donor reacts to the medication and any anaesthetic given.

I don’t have children, does this affect whether I can donate?

No. Many clinics do accept ‘non mothers’. However, clinics usually prefer women to have had their families first for two reasons:

  1. proven fertility
  2. future fertility could be affected by donating eggs.
I’ve had STIs, can I donate?

Clinics will discuss with you the nature of any past and present STIs and whether they are a barrier to you becoming a donor.

I suffer from stress, anxiety and depression, can I still donate?

Your clinic will want to gather as much information from you as it can about your condition so that it can make a decision on an individual and personal basis about whether you can be an egg donor. Clinics recognise and acknowledge that everyone’s health and medical backgrounds are different.

Will any information be kept about me? Where will it be stored and who will see it?
Do I need to tell my employer I am donating?

This is a personal choice although many donors do tell their employers why they are taking time off work.

What happens if I discover that I can’t be a donor?

Your clinic will let you know the reasons you can’t be a donor and will discuss the situation with you and offer support. Your clinic can also advise you about further appropriate support, e.g. GP.

What happens if the screening and testing reveals I have a medical condition affecting my general health or fertility?

Your clinic will let you know the reasons you can’t be a donor and will discuss the situation with you and offer support. Your clinic can also advise you about further appropriate support, e.g. GP.

Do the recipients (have to) tell their children they are donor conceived?

While all donors now have to be identifiable, there is no law that says all donor-conceived people must know of their genetic origins. Some families are very open with their children about their genetic origins while other families don’t tell at all.

Do I need to have up-to-date smear tests to be able to donate?

Clinics will prefer you to have an up-to-date smear test as it gives an indication of health. If no smear test has been done in the last three years, your clinic may well ask that you have one done with your GP.

Why does it matter what my BMI is?

If your BMI indicates that you are overweight then response to the medication and anaesthetic might be affected.

In The Media

Over the last ten years there’s been an increase in egg and sperm donors coming forward in the UK. This didn’t happen by accident. Media coverage, in whatever way, shape or form, has an important role to play. The more media inches, the more awareness, the more donors come forward.

It is as simple as that.

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