The egg donation program at MARGEN clinic is one of the largest and most successful in the world since we get between 65 and 90% of successful pregnancies. We perform hundreds of cycles per year with carefully selected donors. At any time, our database of egg donors includes more than 600 donors, many more than any of other centres. And we are constantly interviewing and adding new candidates for egg donation.
According to Spanish law on assisted reproduction techniques the egg donor must: be between 18 and 35 years old, have normal ovulatory function and not suffer from malformations, genetic, congenital or hereditary diseases (close-knit family cannot suffer from these diseases either). The donor cannot be adopted since it is essential to know the medical history of her close relatives. They must be physically and mentally healthy and not having given birth to more than 6 children. It is positive if the donor has already been a mother beforehand.
Candidates, who are accepted in our database of egg donors, must complete a detailed application as a questionnaire. Candidates from the group who are selected will then attend an interview with one of our coordinators from the oocyte assessment program. After the first interview with our program coordinator, between 10-20% of the candidates are ruled out.
The second interview is with one of our doctors, where a medical is performed to detect infectious diseases (AIDS, Hepatitis B or C, vaginal Herpes, syphilis…), genetic problems and drug abuse. A vaginal ultrasound, gynaecological exam, chromosome study (karyotype), haematology analysis, and psychological examination will be carried out.
Once the candidate has successfully passed all tests and they are entered onto our databaseand then theycan be chosen as an egg donor for a recipient, according to the physical characteristics of the recipient.
Egg donation has become one of the most required in assisted reproduction since there are many cases where a woman cannot have children by herself, although she can generate them. Women without ovaries, with insufficient number of ovules, women with poor quality eggs, with early menopause, women with genetic diseases communicable to children, menopausal women… etc, need another woman to donate eggs to become a mother.
Egg donation is a painless procedure, the amount of discomfort which may occuris similar to those produced by menstruation, but the clinic provides detailed information to the donors about the risks. It is important to note that there are exhaustive checks carried out prior to donation to reduce the risk to levels virtually testimonials (relevant problems occur in 1 out of 100,000 cases), although are unlikely, minor problems such as pain, abdominal swelling can occur, in 1 out of 250 cases, but it is highly unlikely to damage the donor´s ovary. For example, egg donation does not prevent the future fertility of the donor (women are born with 2 million eggs and use about 400 or 500 throughout their life).
The donor agrees to a stimulation of the ovarian cycle which will last between 12 days and a month. In this way, they will get between 8 and 15 eggs per cycle. The treatment consists of a series of injections under the skin which will have to be given to the donor during this time at the clinic. Throughout the process periodic ultrasounds and hormone analysis will be carried out in order to control everything to evolve properly and set the time of the extraction of eggs.
The eggs are obtained by puncture, vaginally and under sedation. This process usually takes about 20 minutes. After approximatelytwo hours they can continue with their normal life.
Obtained ripe eggs are then fertilized with the sperm of the recipient woman’s partner and the embryos are then transferred to the recipient.
Also it should be noted that if a woman is undergoing a fertility treatment, she can donate the surplus eggs, but only in certain specific cases.
In Spain, assisted reproduction law does not allow the sale or marketing of oocytes, it must be an act of altruism and charity, to help those women who cannot have children on their own. However, there are a number of annoyances and inconveniences (between 20 and 25 monthly visits, treatments, etc.) that are usually offset by the clinics in which there are donations of eggs. The amount of this compensation tends to be between 600 and 900 Euros, according to the clinic.
Egg donation is completely anonymous to the donor and the recipient. Receiving women can meet certain relevant characteristics of the donor (age, race, height, weight, skin colour, colour of eyes, colour and texture of hair, constitution, blood type, etc.), previously to the process of fertilization of the oocytes.