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What is egg donation?

Differences between IVF and egg donations donor egg IVF

Egg donation involves an egg donor and an egg recipient. The egg donor undergoes IVF treatment to produce eggs. These are then fertilised in the laboratory by the sperm of the egg recipient’s husband or partner (or a sperm donor). The fertilised eggs become embryos, and one or two of them are replaced back into the uterus of the egg recipient to create a pregnancy.

At AVA-Peter, any extra embryos of sufficiently good quality can be frozen to be used for a further attempt. They are now the property of the recipient and/or her partner. After a successful pregnancy, the egg recipient gives birth to the child and becomes the child’s mother.

Differences between IVF and IVF with egg donation

The main difference between ‘normal IVF’ and ‘egg donation IVF’ is that an extra person is needed to help create a pregnancy. This is the egg donor, whose eggs are used when the would-be mother (the egg recipient) cannot use her own eggs to get pregnant. The egg donor takes the usual drugs used in IVF treatment to stimulate her ovaries to produce eggs. She then has the eggs retrieved under anaesthetic, just like in normal IVF treatment. After this, the egg donor plays no further part in the procedure.

egg donation babies image

The eggs are placed in a dish in the fertility laboratory, where they are fertilised using the sperm of the egg recipient’s husband or partner, or by a sperm donor. Once fertilised, they are known as embryos. At AVA-Peter, the embryos are cultured in the laboratory for 5 days. The embryologist assesses them every day during this 5-day period to see which ones will have the best chance of implanting and resulting in a pregnancy.

When blastocyst stage is reached (5 days after the egg collection), one or two are replaced into the womb (uterus) of the egg recipient. Any remaining embryos may be frozen, and become your property. (You can choose whether they are owned by the recipient, the recipient and her partner, or only her partner.) In order to provide the embryos with a good growth environment, the egg recipient takes hormones which make her body ready for the pregnancy.

If all goes well, one (or both) of the embryos will implant in the egg recipient’s womb and the pregnancy then develops further. The egg recipient continues to take hormones until the placenta produces enough of them itself to sustain the pregnancy. Just as with any other pregnancy, her body nourishes the growing child, thereby creating a strong mother-child bond. After giving birth, breastfeeding can further strengthen the closeness she feels with her child.


In our egg donation program:


With one fresh embryo chosen on morphologic criteria only clinical pregnancy rates are 54%


With one frozen embryo chosen on morphologic criteria only clinical pregnancy rates are 52%


With one frozen embryo chosen on morphologic criteria and normal for 23 chromosome pairs clinical pregnancy rates are 60%

The highest live birth rate per each embryo useв for transfer is achieved if embryo is chosen on the basis of both, the morphology and the genetics.

Read more about choosing the best embryo for transfer on the basis of both: morphology and genetics

The number of babies born through egg donation is increasing each year as more women become aware of this form of treatment. Are you one of the people who can benefit?

Frequently Asked Questions about Egg Donation IVF

Where do the eggs for egg donations come from?

For the egg recipient and her future child the role of the egg donor is huge. Through our detailed psychological interviews we accept for egg donations at our clinic only 10-20% of potential egg donor applicants, thus making sure we have only nice, educated, motivated healthy young women with reliable social background, who have own healthy children and strong respect to mothers and motherhood. All our egg donors have to write their personal motivation letters, available in their individual egg donor profiles of our Egg Donor Database.

Through thorough medical laboratory testing of our potential egg donors we ensure that donor eggs received for your egg donation IVF come from healthy young women with high fertility potential, excellent medical history and psychological profile.

Who is allowed to become an egg donor?

The regulations for becoming an egg donor are very stringent, both legally and within our clinic.

By law in Russia egg donors must be under the age of 34 and have children of their own.

At out clinic we have reduced this cut off age to 32 as we feel that this increases the egg donors medical abilities and fertility potential, ensuring only low dose stimulation and treatment are required to produce many, excellent quality eggs for use by the recipient.


What tests do the egg donors undertake before their egg donations?

To become an egg donor at our clinic is not a quick or easy process!

Many women contact us with the desire to donate their eggs, we only accept around 10% of candidates.

The first step in the process to becoming an egg donor is an interview with our egg donor team which helps to better understand the potential donor’s primary motivation for egg donation. Having successfully passed through the interview, a potential egg donor is required to complete a full disclosure of their medical history and our extensive questionnaire.

Once the medical history and questionnaire are completed they are required to have the full laboratory examination and to be seen by three medical doctors: a GP, a gynaecologist and a psychiatrist.  The psychological assessment ensures that a future egg donor understands the long term consequences of her egg donations

Through this process we can ensure our patients have access to egg donors that will make their future dreams of a family come true with the security that the egg donor will not only have excellent medical and psychological prospective surrounding treatment, but also the stability of egg donors ready and willing to donate as well as understanding the big meaning and the long term consequences of their egg donations.

Why do egg donors do egg donations?

There are many personal and social reasons why women choose to become an egg donor, many egg donation recipients feel that this must be due purely to financial benefits.

However, although egg donors receive a small financial contribution for their donations this is not the sole reason they choose to donate, and through the initial assessments they undertake with us any potential egg donor that is donating purely for financial reasons are not accepted.

During their assessment potential egg donors are asked to write their own reasons and motivation for donating

Potential egg donors also have their own children and see the wonder that this brings to them and their family, they wish to help other women experience the wonders of having their own child.

Many potential egg donors report they have seen their own family members struggle with infertility and feel that they can help other women to become parents. Many potential egg donors feel they have a gift that they can give to others, a gift that brings them happiness, excitement and joy – they want to feel they have shared their own fertility with others so that they too can experience this wonder of creating new life for themselves and their families.

Can I choose an egg donor for my own egg donation IVF?

Yes! We are very happy to offer our patients the opportunity of choosing an individual egg donor for their own egg donation IVF from our extensive Egg Donor Database, the only one of its kind in Europe!

Patients are given full access to the database, for free, enabling them to choose an egg donor based on their own priorities and human values from many extended donor profiles (over 200 personal details about the donor, their family and their personal values).

Would you like to find out more about how you can choose an egg donor for your own egg donation IVF? Please read more

If you would like to gain a personal explanation on the phone in Swedish about how you can choose an egg donor  from the data base for your own egg donation IVF, please call Maria.

There are no questions that are too small for me. I am here to discuss them with you

+44 78009 03435

Mon - Fri 10-12am and 15-17pm Saturdays 10-12am
Tamsin Bowers, UK Patient Coordinator

Tamsin Bowers

Can I see photos of the egg donors available for egg donations?

Through the use of the egg donor database patients are able to access photos of egg donors until the age of 12years old. Along with the extended egg donor profile this ensures we meet the personal values and needs of our patients making them feel secure in their choice of egg donor. Our patients can keep this information for the future should they wish to share with their children about their egg donation IVF.


Can I or my future child, conceived through egg donation IVF, contact the egg donor in the future?

In Russia egg donations are anonymous, this means that although we can offer our patients extended egg donor profiles and photographs of egg donors, the patients, or their future children, will not be able to make direct contact with their egg donors now, or in the future, after their egg donations. The egg donor will also never receive information about the recipient of their eggs, or the children created from them through egg donation IVF.

What are my chances of getting pregnant and having a baby through egg donation IVF?

Egg donation IVF offers excellent chances of a successful pregnancy and live birth in women up to the age of 51yrs that can no longer use their own eggs. Fresh egg donation IVF, transfer of a single embryo, offers success rates of above 54%. If patients should choose to use Pre implantation Genetic Screening alongside their egg donation IVF this success rate increases to 60% in single embryo transfer.

What are the guarantees in egg donations at your clinic?

In all egg donations at our clinic we guarantee a minimum of 10 mature donor eggs available to each recipient for her egg donation IVF. An average egg collection in our egg donors provides between 15-17 eggs. We do not egg share so this means that all eggs collected from your individually chosen, or matched egg donor belong to you and will be used only for your own egg donation IVF! You can read more about our “10 egg guarantee” for each donor egg IVF

If you should choose to use our money back egg donations based on live birth we will guarantee a successful pregnancy and live birth, within 3 fresh egg donation IVF cycles, or we will return 70% of your money to you. You can read more about our money back system here

How soon can I start my egg donation IVF treatment at your clinic?

You can start your egg donation IVF treatment as soon as you would like to and in a time frame that is suitable for you! All we ask is that you tell us when you can visit the clinic for your embryo transfer and which egg donor you prefer, we will then work your individual treatment plan around these dates, ensuring that you can plan in advance your travel and vacation timings. With the assistance of a local doctor, in your home country, you only need to visit us once as all other preparation can be carried out distantly. Please read more about schedule for egg donation IVF

How much medication do I have to take to get my body ready for egg donation IVF?

In egg donation IVF treatment the amount of medication needed for donor egg recipient is very little, through the use of hormonal support, in the form of patches, tablets and pessaries, we can ensure the very best preparation of your body and guarantee that you are optimally ready for your chosen embryo transfer date. Would you like to read more about medication for donor egg recipient? Please look here

May I use both sperm and egg donation IVF?

Yes! At AVA-Peter we are very happy to help patients that require both sperm and egg donation IVF to create their much wanted family. Alongside our egg donor database we can also offer an excellent choice of sperm donors. If however you should prefer to choose your own sperm donor from one of the main European Sperm Banks, or already have sperm stored elsewhere, we will be happy to help you with shipment to our clinic ready for your egg donation IVF with donor sperm.


May I have a brother or sister from the same egg donor?

In egg donations the aim is always to create many embryos from the donor eggs collected in your chosen egg donor. After the initial embryo transfer all remaining suitable embryos are frozen for use in the future should you require more embryo transfers or further siblings. By freezing all remaining embryos means that when used for future siblings they will be directly related to each other. Please read more about embryo cryopreservation

If you have got your first child and there are no frozen embryo left after your egg donation IVF, there is still a chance that your egg donor will be ready to come back for one more donation for you. Our egg donors are very loyal to the clinic and all have a very strong feeling about maternity and family. Please read personal motivation letters of our egg donors

Will our mother-child bond be normal after my egg donation IVF?

This is always a common concern, or worry for our egg donation recipients! This is why in all of our egg donations we offer up to 3 free session with our excellent and experienced family therapist Tone Braten. During these sessions patients can explore and eliminate their own fears, concerns and worries and with Tones support enable them to continue with treatment and look forward to becoming a parent through egg donation IVF.

Tone runs a very nice blog. Please have a look

Would you like to read more about maternity after egg donation IVF? Please read here

Do I have to tell the child about having used egg donation IVF?

The decision to tell your child about your journey to their birth is entirely up to you, every patient will feel differently about whether they should tell their child that egg donation IVF was used to create their much wanted family and as your child grows they will also impact upon that decision. There is no right, or wrong answer to the question of to ‘tell, or not to tell’ your child, but with Tone’s support and guidance you will be able to find the right choice for you and your family. Tone will also give you the tools for when the time to tell is right in the future should you decided to tell your child about their creation through egg donation IVF.

Read more

Interested in egg donation at AVA-Peter?

We are happy to call you at your convenience
Request a call Phone consultation is free of charge and non-obliging
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A blog by Tone Bråten family counsellor

A blog — to help you on your journey to become parents!

Our patients tell their stories

  • Willeke and Mario from Netherlands come to AVA-Peter for egg donation treatment… Enjoy this touching and sincere documentary by Jorien van Nes