There are many reasons why women may need, or prefer, to use donor eggs and this area of treatment is one of our most popular.
Why might I need donor eggs ?
They are generally used when the women’s own eggs are unlikely to lead to a viable pregnancy. It can be associated with age; a women’s egg reserves decline as she gets older in both quantity and quality. Premature menopause is another reason, or if she has been left infertile as a result of medical treatment.
Sometimes women choose donor eggs if they have an hereditary genetic disorder that they do not wish to pass on.
Where do the eggs come from ?
Here at the Cyprus IVF Clinic, we have a comprehensive donor programme. Run by Dr Firdevs who personally selects and screens potential donors, it has a rigorous testing procedure which ensures a high quality of donor eggs. All of our donors are aged between 20-26 and they are all proven donors, i.e. each one has donated eggs which have led to a successful pregnancy.
To ensure that only high quality eggs are used, all donors undergo stringent tests. These include:
- Genetic disorders
- Infectious diseases (Anti-HIV, Anti-HCV, Rubella IgG, CMV IgG, HbsAg, VDRL)
- Hormone tests (FSH, AMH, LH, Estradiol and Prolactin)
As well as this, we have regular screening procedures for all donors every two months.
At Cyprus IVF Clinic your treatment is our priority and therefore all of our donors are super-ovulated for the individual egg recipient. Between 10 and 20 eggs will be harvested, all for your exclusive use.
As part of our unique approach we now guarantee formally that you will receive 10, high quality, eggs per cycle.
Unlike in the UK and many other countries worldwide, our donor programme is completely anonymous and confidential for both parties. The donor will never receive any information about the egg recipient, and the success or otherwise of the donated eggs, and children will not be given any donor information.
The majority of couples receiving donor eggs decide against telling their children and this fits in well with our completely confidential and anonymous approach.
Can I use eggs in my treatment donated by a friend or family member ?
Yes, but the donor will still be subject to a battery of tests.
How do I get started ?
The first stage is to make initial contact with Team Miracle at Cyprus IVF Clinic. This is done through one of our specialist patient co-ordinators. You will then be given all the details and explanations of what your treatment will involve. Once you’re satisfied and ready to move on, we will then ask you to complete a Medical Information Form. We will need a full medical history, plus some recent photographs. This is then placed in a completely confidential file which is used by Dr Firdevs to match you with a shortlist of donors and your treatment plan. At this stage we will need a £200 deposit which is valid for six months.
Our donor matching programme is painstakingly done. We take details from all of our donors, including:
- Hair and eye colour
- Level of education
This gives us an overview of each donor and we will then produce a shortlist. Legally we cannot provide photos of our donors, but we do match your donors’ appearance as closely as we can to
your own. Part of our comprehensive approach involves being able to match all ethnicities.
You will receive the shortlist and select your donor yourself, based on your own, personal criteria. The chosen donor is then reserved for your treatment and will not donate any further eggs before you have your treatment.
As part of your preparation for IVF in Cyprus you will need to take certain medications. We will send the prescriptions from Cyprus and you can take them to your local pharmacy. If you prefer you can order them online from our partner pharmacy in the UK and they can be delivered worldwide.
Team Miracle will provide all of the medical explanations, but don’t forget that you can ask questions, and for clarifications, at each and every step of the treatment programme. Our patient co-ordinators are always on hand to help and advise.
Taking an oral contraceptive is useful in regulating your menstrual cycle. Which then helps us to match your cycle to that of your donor.
The medication that you take before travelling to Cyprus depends on your individual circumstances. If you are menopausal (not menstruating) then you will need to take oral Estradiol (Progynova) tablets for 10-12 days in order to thicken the lining of the uterus.
If you still have periods then you will need one Gonapeptyl Depot injection; this is a slow release form of triptorelin. This lowers the levels of progesterone and estrogen within the body, and then you will need to take Estradiol.
Further medication may be needed once you have arrived in Cyprus. This could include:
- Monodox (dexycyline) antibiotics
- Prednol (prednisolone) tablets
- Progestan (progesterone) pessaries
- Clexine (enoxaparin) injections
- Proluton (hydroxyprogesterone caproate USP)
The next step after that involves arriving at the Cyprus IVF Clinic, where you will meet Dr Firdevs and one of our patient co-ordinators.
Once you are in Cyprus Egg Donation
On your first day you will have a trans-vaginal ultrasound scan to check whether the uterine lining is ready for embryo transfer. The donor will have her eggs collected over the next day or so. You will also be issued with any prescription medications that you need.
If applicable, your partner will be asked to produce a sperm sample on the day of egg collection. We always recommend abstaining sexually for three days prior to producing the sample.
Once this is done, your eggs and sperm will then be combined to create your embryos.
Dr Firdevs always uses the ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) method of fertilising the egg. This involves injecting the sperm directly into the egg. It isn’t a strictly necessary part of IVF, but it’s something that the Cyprus IVF Clinic offers for free in order to maximise the chances of viable embryos being produced.
Once the ICSI has taken place, the eggs are then incubated for 24 hours. After that time an embryologist will assess the eggs to see if fertilisation has taken place. Your patient co-ordinator will then tell you how many you have. The embryos are left to develop over a few days with minimal contact because any changes in temperature or humidity can have an adverse effect.
Between 3-5 days later, embryo transfer takes place. This is a simply procedure, not unlike a smear test.
We will take the three best embryos from a guaranteed pool of ten, good quality eggs. Your chances of a successful pregnancy are greatly enhanced by this.
Dr Firdevs will expose and clean the cervix with a sterile solution using a speculum. The embryos in their culture medium will be placed inside a small tube, or catheter, which Dr Firdevs will then pass carefully through the vagina and cervix into the uterus where she will release the embryos. All this is monitored by ultrasound scan so the embryos are put into the best possible place.
Any remaining, high quality, embryos can then be frozen for possible future use, should you wish to do this.
The embryo transfer completes your treatment at the Cyprus IVF Centre. After this you can go home and back to your normal routine. You should avoid:
- Hot showers
This is because they can substantially raise the core temperature of the body and therefore the temperature inside the uterus. We also recommend no sex for two weeks. Other than these precautions you can continue as normal. Light exercise, showering and general life can be resumed. At this stage you should continue to takes any medications that are prescribed for you.
The 12th day after embryo transfer is the earliest point at which you can have an HCG blood test. It will be too early for a urine test, so a blood test is the only accurate way to determine if you are pregnant or not. If a blood test cannot be arranged, then you should wait until day 14 after transfer and do a urine test using a first morning urine sample.
A positive test
It’s important that you follow your medication regime until the 12th week of pregnancy. You should also register the pregnancy with your local doctor and begin an antenatal care plan, if available. At 7 weeks you can have an ultrasound scan to check the number of embryos that have been implanted and monitor the foetal heartbeat.
A negative test
If the HCG blood test is negative then you need to stop all medication and you will have a bleed. If you are still menstruating then your normal cycle should return after 4-6 weeks.
If a urine test is negative then you need to wait two days and then test again.