For one in eight couples in the U.S., infertility is a challenge standing in the way of having a family. Women who pursue motherhood later in life or who have undergone cancer treatment may discover that they do not have healthy, viable eggs with which to have a family. For these women, donor egg is the only option for fertility treatment.
Approximately 16,858 procedures were done in 2012 using donor eggs, and with birthrates for U.S. women ages 40 to 44 hitting their highest point since 1967, donor egg usage will continue to rise.
"Advancements in frozen donor egg have given many women the opportunity to have the child they dream of," says Heidi Hayes, Executive Vice President of California Cryobank's Donor Egg Bank. Hayes should know — she has had two children through donor egg. She offers nine little-known facts about using frozen donor egg to have a child:
1. Pursue treatment on your time frame.
Because frozen donor egg IVF cycles can be completed in as little as one to three months, couples can pursue treatment at the exact time that works for them.
2. No difference in pregnancy rates with fresh vs. frozen donor egg.
One’s likelihood of achieving a baby using a fresh or frozen donor egg are nearly the same, roughly 47 percent of women who use frozen donor eggs will go on to deliver a live born baby per treatment cycle. The odds of a couple ages 29-33 conceiving without any fertility treatment help is only 20-25 percent in any given month.
3. No travel required.
When doing an egg retrieval cycle with a fresh egg donor, the egg donor often lives in a different location. As a result, using a (fresh) egg donor can add significant cost variables such as travel fees for the couple and donor, and the fees of two fertility centers. Frozen donor eggs arrive at your fertility center within 14 days and are immediately available for treatment.
4. Receive the amount of eggs needed for treatment.
When working with a fresh egg donor, couples invest thousands of dollars without knowing the amount of eggs, if any, that will result for treatment. Working with a frozen donor egg bank allows couples to acquire the amount of eggs necessary for treatment. Egg lots contain five to seven eggs.
5. Have a child in your 40s.
Once a woman is over 40, there is only a five percent chance of achieving pregnancy in any given month. With frozen donor egg, live birth rates are over 47 percent at age 40.
6. It comes with a money back guarantee.
In a time where there are no guarantees, there are financial programs with frozen donor egg that offer a money back guarantee. If a couple is unsuccessful in having a baby within six donor egg treatment cycles, they receive a 100 percent refund.
7. It’s cheaper.
The average fresh donor egg cycle is roughly $25,000 - $38,000, while the cost of a frozen donor egg cycle is nearly half.
8. Test for genetic disorders.
Donors are tested for the most common autosomal recessive genetic disorders. This testing can reduce the probability of having a child born with a genetic condition.
9. Genetic siblings are possible.
Using frozen donor egg allows for genetic siblings. You can bank eggs by the same donor for your future children, and grow your family as you are able.
Armed with this new information, are you ready to find your donor match?