European Egg Bank
CRGH hosts the European Egg Bank – the largest bank of frozen donor eggs in the UK.
Some women are unable to have children because their ovaries do not produce viable eggs. This can occur for numerous reasons, including poorly developed ovaries, premature menopause, previous surgery or chemotherapy.
For these women, IVF using donated eggs offers their only chance of becoming pregnant. The donated eggs are fertilised by the recipient partner’s sperm, or with donor sperm.
We will work to match you with a donor with similar physical characteristics, such as skin, eye, and hair colour. We will also give you information about the donor’s nationality, height, weight, medical history and occupation. In addition, each donor writes a personal statement about who they are and why they have offered to donate.
We treat patients from the UK, and a number of European countries where egg freezing and egg donation is not currently permitted. We accept donated eggs from across Europe, enabling women and couples to select a donor with specific characteristics and – if they wish – from their own country of origin.
Becoming an Egg Donor
The European Egg Bank continues to run an active egg donation program. It is a ‘one stop’ service in which the consultation, screening and counselling are all provided in a a single session
In order to make an egg donation, you will need to fulfil certain criteria to establish your suitability:
- You must be aged between 20 and 35 years old
- You must be fit and healthy
- You must have no family history of inherited diseases or genetic disorders
- You must be within normal weight for your height with a BMI of between 19 and 30
- You must not attempt to become pregnant during the process
- You must have no unexplained infertility issues
Before donating eggs, you will be required to undergo screening tests to reduce the risks of passing on diseases or deformities to any resultant child. It is a legal requirement for written consent to be obtained from the egg donor. Donors can withdraw their consent at any point until their eggs are used in treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions – Using Donor Eggs
1) How does the process work?
- Your first appointment will be an initial consultation with one of our Doctors to review your medical history
- You will also be scheduled to meet the European Egg Bank Coordinator to discuss the programme and any tests which you will be required to undertake.
- We ask all couples considering egg donation to visit our independent Counsellor. This will help you to understand what is involved in receiving donor eggs and to make a fully informed decision.
- The matching process will commence once all tests are clear
- Once a donor is identified and agreed you then see your Doctor to discuss your treatment plan
- You will then have a consultation with one of our nurses to complete your screening tests and consents so that you can commence your treatment.
2) Why should I choose the European Egg Bank at CRGH?
We have been helping patients to become parents using donated eggs since the inception of CRGH. Our clinic has some of the best success rates in the country for IVF with donated eggs. Our statistics show that we have 45% -50% live birth rate per embryo transfer, and around 43% live birth rate per thaw cycle started in women having treatment with frozen donor eggs between 2010 and 2015.
3) What is the age limit for having treatment at your clinic?
The age limit for egg recipients at CRGH is less than 50 years old at the start of their treatment.
4) What information would you be able to provide to me regarding the donor?
As specified by the HFEA, we can provide unidentifiable information, this includes: colour of eyes/hair, texture of hair, weight, height, nationality, skin complexion, basic medical history and occupation (if available). However we cannot provide a photo or demographic details about the donor.
5) Is the donation process anonymous?
The donor remains anonymous to the parents. However, any child born as a result of egg donation can request, from the HFEA, non-identifying information about the donor at the age of 16 and identifying information at the age of 18.
6) Do the donors have any legal claim to future children?
The donor will not be the legal parent or have any obligation to any child born as a result of a donation, they will not be named on the birth certificate, they will not be asked to support the child financially nor do they have any rights over how the child will be brought up. The woman who gives birth is the legal mother of the child. For more information on legal rights please go onto the HFEA website: www.hfea.gov.uk
7) How do you source your donors?
CRGH works with several well-established UK donor agencies. All our donors are seen by one of our Doctors and receive egg donation treatment in our clinic as well as go through counselling before commencement of treatment. Their eggs are frozen and stored in our egg bank and we work on frozen eggs that are ready for treatment.
8) Can I source my own egg donor?
Yes. You may source your own egg donor. The donor must be seen at CRGH to have her medical history and investigations/screening tests done, at your expense, before proceeding with treatment. The donor will also have to attend a counselling session with one of our fertility counsellors.
9) How long will I wait?
There is no waiting period for booking your initial consultation. Once you have had your consultation the wait is usually 2-3 weeks to be matched with a donor, depending on the characteristics matching process.
10) How can I be sure that CRGH egg donors will produce good results?
We always say that there are no guarantees in medicine, just as there are no guarantees in life! That said we take great precautions in selecting donors for our Egg Donation programme. You can be assured that all our donors go through screening tests and checked for any known medical problem in the family. All donors are younger than 35 years and most are in their twenties.
11) How many eggs will I receive from a donor?
This will depend on the number of eggs collected from a donor as each patient/procedure is different. We offer a minimum of 6 to 7 eggs but there are opportunities to select larger numbers which can be discussed with your doctor.
12) What type of screening do egg donors go through?
Besides the clinical assessment based on personal and family history, a donor will also undergo an ultrasound scan and blood test to assess ovarian reserve. In addition, they will be screened for HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Syphilis, Gonorrhoea, Chlamydia and genetic screening for karyotype (chromosome test) and cystic fibrosis. Some donors may require further investigations based on their ethnic origin, such as screening for Thalassaemia (Mediterranean, Asian or non-northern European), Sickle Cell (Asian or Afro-Caribbean) and Tay Sachs (Jewish).
13) What happens if I am not happy with the donor offered?
After being offered a donor, the egg recipient team will give you few days to take a decision whether you are keen to proceed with treatment with the offered donor eggs. In case you refuse the donor, your name will remain on the waiting list and we will try to offer you another match as soon as we can. The time needed to offer the second match cannot be confirmed as it depends on the availability of the donor characteristics required. This also depends on the reason for refusing, to make sure that your preferences are available on our donor database.
14) Does donor genetic testing preclude any genetic condition that the child might develop in the future?
There is no way that genetic testing can be absolutely certain. The tests performed will lower the possibility of transmitting the conditions tested (ex: Cystic fibrosis). This will not exclude the possibility of a child having a genetic or congenital anomaly, although the chances are rare.
15) Are egg donors paid?
Egg donors are entitled to a maximum of £750 per donation to cover their expenses as per HFEA regulations.
16) What is egg sharing?
Egg sharing is when a lady having fertility treatment (IVF) shares part of her eggs with someone else. We do not currently offer this at CRGH.
If you’d like to know more please contact us on 0207 837 2905, or email email@example.com