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Infertility and treatment

Fertility treatment with donor eggs

A fertility doctor performing IVF treatment with donor eggs

Fertility treatment with donor eggs differs a bit from treatment with donor sperm or a partner’s sperm. In this blog post, we try to guide you through the process of fertility treatment with donor eggs, as well as our fertility expert Saghar Kasiri answering some of the most relevant questions regarding fertility treatment.

If you need donor eggs to fulfil your dream of a child and wants to use frozen eggs, there is only one type of fertility treatment available for you: ICSI treatment. Because the donor eggs are frozen, the shell of the egg is still hard at the time of fertilization which makes it impossible for sperm cells to enter the egg without help.

What is ICSI treatment?

ICSI treatment is short for Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection and is a method of assisted reproduction for people having trouble conceiving naturally. ICSI treatment is similar to IVF treatment because in both types of fertility treatment the eggs are fertilized outside the body in a lab. The difference between the two types of fertility treatment is the fertilization process. In ICSI treatment each donor egg is individually injected with a single sperm cell, therefore bypassing the stage where the sperm must naturally penetrate the egg. In IVF treatment the egg is placed in a petri dish alongside sperm cells, which then need to enter the egg on their own. Because the shell of the donor egg is hard after freezing, sperm cells cannot enter the egg naturally. Therefore, the only way to complete fertilization is through ICSI treatment.

If you want to learn more about the difference between fresh donor eggs and frozen donor eggs, then follow the link to our blog post about the subject.

The process of Fertility treatment with donor eggs

In fertility treatment with donor sperm or a partner's sperm, the process will include egg retrieval from the woman. But when using donor eggs, egg retrieval is performed on the egg donor, good quality eggs are then selected, and frozen for future use of patients.

  • The first step of fertility treatment with donor eggs is to choose an egg donor. The process of choosing an egg donor can be long, and if you need guidance on how to choose an egg donor, follow the link. After the ideal egg donor has been selected, it is time for you to obtain the donor eggs and have them shipped to your preferred fertility clinic.
  • The second step starts once the donor eggs arrive to your chosen fertility clinic, a treatment plan will be arranged for you by the clinic and the frozen donor eggs will be fertilized with your partner´s sperm or sperm from a donor using the ICSI treatment technique. After fertilization and embryo formation, the embryos remain in the laboratory for a few more days to monitor their growth and development.
  • The third step is the transfer of the successful embryos, where the embryologist transfers one or more of the embryos into the woman’s uterus with a catheter. The number of embryos you wish to transfer will typically be decided between you, possibly a partner, and the fertility doctor. Often only one embryo is transferred because of potential health risks in a twin pregnancy for both the children and the mother. Hereafter, a pregnancy hopefully occurs, and the treatment is complete.

If more than one embryo develops sufficiently, the excess embryos can be frozen and stored for another attempt or siblings. Embryos are an important part of fertility treatment, and if you want to learn more about them, follow the link to our blog post What is an embryo and how is it related to pregnancy?.

If the fertility treatment is successful we would like to hear the good news from you. Follow the link to read how you can help us and others in need of donor eggs, by registering your pregnancy.

How many donor eggs do I need for each treatment cycle?

For women struggling with fertility issues, having 10 to 15 healthy eggs would be enough for a successful IVF treatment, plus having some surplus embryos for future use. In fertility treatment with donor eggs, you can often settle with fewer eggs, because of the high-quality eggs from our donors.

At Cryos, we make sure that the donor eggs we have are high quality. That is why we have an extensive screening program of our egg donors, where the donors are tested both physically and mentally. Therefore, we recommend you purchase six donor eggs for ICSI treatment. In general, six donor eggs should be enough to produce a good number of blastocysts (Day 5 embryos) for transfer. We always recommend you consult your doctor before ordering the eggs.

A pregnant woman after receiving fertility treatment with donor eggs

The success rate for fertility treatment with donor eggs

Studies show that the rate of obtaining a pregnancy when using fertility treatment with donor eggs is about 50%. A 50% success rate is high compared to other types of fertility treatments. Cryos pregnancy data shows over 75% clinical pregnancy rate which is significantly higher than the average stated above. The high success rate of using egg donors from Cryos is due to the high-quality of eggs produced and frozen at our state of art laboratories.

Cryos Donor Egg Guarantee

At Cryos, we have our Donor Egg Guarantee programme, which makes it possible for you to focus on and feel safe during your fertility treatment. Through the Donor Egg Guarantee, Cryos promises that the fertility treatment with donor eggs will result in:

  • One blastocyst (and possibly more)
  • OR a pregnancy from embryos that have not reached the blastocyst stage by day 5.

If these parameters are not met, Cryos will replace the oocytes one time free of charge. To qualify for the Cryos Donor Egg Guarantee, there are some criteria you need to fulfil. Read more about Cryos Donor Egg Guarantee here.

If you want to read and learn more about children conceived with the help of IVF treatment with donor eggs, we can recommend our blog post about Katie, who was conceived with the help of an egg donor