FAQ

All your egg donation questions – answered right here.

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Frequently asked questions about Egg Donation

Am I eligible to donate my eggs?

To become an egg donor, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Aged between 18 and 35 as generally, natural fertility and egg quality starts to decline when you reach 35.
  • To have a clear medical history with no genetic or hereditary disorders (such as Type 1 Diabetes).
  • To have a BMI (Body Mass Index) between 19 and 29. How do I find this out? (Link to calculator).
  • A non-smoker or have stopped smoking for at least three months; e-cigarettes still count as smoking.
  • To be willing to attend regular clinic appointments, including counselling, to ensure you fully understand the implications of donating your eggs.
  • To be willing to be identifiable to any child born using your eggs. (UK law means a donor-conceived person can apply to HFEA for information about you when they turn 18). 
  • Be willing to possibly change your current contraception if you're currently using the Mirena coil or implant. 
  • If you have recently had a baby, we ask that you wait six months after giving birth to give your body a chance to recover, and you can't be breastfeeding while donating or be pregnant.
What is body mass index (BMI)?

Your body mass index (BMI) is a measure that uses your height and weight to work out if your weight is healthy.

How do I calculate my BMI?

To be accepted as an egg donor your BMI should be between 19 and 29. Your BMI (Body Mass Index) is calculated using your height and weight to make sure you are within the range to become an egg donor.

You can calculate your BMI using our handy calculator below:

ft in.
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To be accepted as an egg donor your BMI should be between 19 and 29

Can I still donate my eggs if I smoke?

Due to the risks to egg quality caused by nicotine, smokers cannot be accepted as egg donors. When you apply to become an egg donor, we ask you if you smoke, and we will test your urine for nicotine at your appointments.

If you used to smoke or are trying to stop smoking, you must have no nicotine in your system for at least three months before your donation application. You should then be free from the effects of nicotine, including e-cigarettes, as they still contain nicotine.

Can passive smoking give a positive result for your nicotine test?

You should be free from the effects of nicotine, so please be aware that passive smoking can give a positive result in your nicotine test.

Can I donate eggs if I have a pre-existing condition?

Having a medical condition – even one for which you take regular medication – doesn't necessarily exclude you from being an egg donor. It's always worth checking with us before you apply. It depends on the condition and whether it is hereditary to any child born from your eggs.

We'll always seek clarification as to the nature of the condition and its potential impact on your health and the health of a donor-conceived child before accepting you as an egg donor.

Can I donate my eggs if I am adopted?

You can still donate if you are adopted, but you will need to know your full medical history and as long as you meet all the other requirements, being adopted won’t affect you being accepted onto our donor programme.

Can I still be a donor if I have been sterilised?

Yes

Is there a payment for egg donation?

While there is no direct payment for donating your eggs, you will be compensated for your time. Women who become egg donors will receive £750 for each donation cycle. This covers any expenses for attending each appointment.

My partner does not want me to donate – can I still donate?

We would always say that having your family’s support is important, so we would recommend your partner or family are happy for you to donate before you apply to be an egg donor.

What support do I get as an egg donor?

 From the moment you apply to the donation of your eggs and beyond, we will ensure you are well looked after by offering support throughout; you will not be on your own, our team have been looking after egg donors for over 30 years ,so we will make sure you get the right care and advice at every step of your donation.

We make sure that during the egg donation process, you attend counselling sessions with our team to ensure you fully understand the implications associated with your decision.

 Our counsellors are experts in their field and are fully trained to give you the support and the right advice from the very beginning to make sure that you are ready to become an egg donor and that the decision is the right one for you.

Who is the team at Manchester Donors that will be supporting me?

Our Manchester Donor Team has been supporting donors for over 30 years; they understand what an incredible act of kindness donating is, so they are there to support and give you advice on our donor programme. You can meet our expert and friendly Donor Team here. 

Do you need donors from all ethnic backgrounds?

We have lots of patients who are looking for an egg donor to help them reach their dream and have a family of their very own.  We have a shortage of egg donors from ethnic backgrounds, and this does mean that donor choices are very limited for our patients who want a donor with the same ethnicity as themselves. They may have to wait for a long time to find that donor, so we always ask for donations from varied backgrounds. 

Will donating affect my future fertility?

Studies have shown that your fertility will not be compromised if you become an egg donor. Women who have donated eggs in the past have shown no adverse effect on their fertility in the years following the procedure.

Are there any risks to me?

We have measures in place to reduce any risks and our team will monitor you closely during stimulation and after egg collection. The egg collection carries a risk of infection and bleeding. There is also a risk of hyperstimulation - a condition where the ovaries respond quickly to the drugs, producing more eggs than expected.

This is why hormone tests are carried out as part of the screening process, as it allows us to see how your ovaries are likely to respond. You are also monitored regularly once the drugs have been administered in order to prevent hyperstimulation. If this occurs, some women feel bloated and abdominal discomfort, but you will be advised to take pain relief and drink plenty of water.

 Please be assured that you will be in safe hands with a team of experts that will make sure you are cared for at every step of your donation.

Will donating some eggs at the moment make me run out of eggs more quickly?

In a donation cycle, we will collect all of the eggs that would have been lost naturally in that month, so this will not impact you later on in life or make you run out of eggs.

Why are egg donors needed?

More women than ever are now using egg donors to have a baby, and there are many reasons for this. Some of the most common reasons are:

  • Age-related fertility: Many women decide to have children later in life, which can mean their eggs' quality is compromised. For many women, particularly those in their 40s, a donor egg from a younger woman provides the best chance of a family.
  • Ovulatory problems: Some women aren't producing their eggs anymore for a number of reasons, such as early menopause. This means they need a donor egg to start a family.
  • Medical treatment: Medical treatment such as chemotherapy can impact fertility.
  • Risk of hereditary/genetic conditions: In some cases, a woman may decide to use a donor because she carries a genetic or hereditary condition that could be passed down to a child.
How long does the process take?

From your very first appointment to egg collection it can take up to 3 months. The process takes this amount of time as you will be required to undergo various screening tests, medical history checks and counselling sessions before we can accept you as a donor at Manchester Donors. Once you're accepted, and you have been registered with the HFEA, it can take up to 3 weeks to stimulate your ovaries using daily injections to produce mature eggs. During this time, you will attend the clinic for monitoring. 

What happens to my eggs?

All of your eggs are donated. Your donation could go to a recipient couple or our frozen egg bank for use in the future. If your eggs go to a recipient couple, your donated eggs are fertilised in our laboratory using sperm from the male partner of the recipient couple. The resulting embryos are then transferred into the womb of the recipient woman to begin growing as in a normal pregnancy. Any remaining embryos are frozen and stored for future use.

Which screening or tests are required?

We take blood and urine samples to test for infectious diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis, and Chlamydia. We also check your chromosomes and test if you are a carrier of Cystic Fibrosis. We also carry out a transvaginal ultrasound scan to ensure that your ovaries and uterus are healthy and normal.

What medication/ pills will I have to take?

Drugs are taken in the form of daily injections. These drugs mimic the action of the body’s natural hormones. Drug doses and combinations are calculated for each donor depending on a number of factors including age, medical history, body size etc. Details will be given to you in the form of an individual ‘protocol’.

Do I have to have injections?

The drugs are given in the form of injections but it is very straightforward and you can do them yourself at home. You will attend an appointment where a fertility nurse will teach you how to administer the injections in the right way.

If I have an implant, do I have to have it removed?

If you have an implant you must be willing to possibly change your current contraception if you're currently using the Mirena coil or implant. We can talk you though it to explain the reasons why.

 

Why do I need to complete a genetic questionnaire?

We need to know the details of any genetic illness within your family. We ask for medical history for your siblings, parents, and grandparents on maternal and paternal sides of the family to ensure no known serious medical disability or family history of hereditary disorders. 

When will I have to attend appointments?

Appointments will be scheduled to suit you. However, once one of our patients chooses you as their egg donor, the donation process from this point is carefully timed by us, so your eggs are collected at the right time for them to be used. You will come to our clinic, where we schedule drugs regimen and begin ovarian stimulation, and it is at this point, you will be required to attend the clinic at specific times on specific days. 

How many visits to the clinic will I have to make?

Between six and seven. These include your virtual appointments. We are here to support you through every stage while you are part of our donation programme, and we ask every donor to talk to our counsellors (this is a virtual appointment). This appointment will be followed by a virtual consultation with the doctor. You will normally have three or four monitoring appointments and then one visit for egg collection. 

Will I need a general anaesthetic?

Egg collections are usually carried out under local anaesthetic and oral sedation. During the post-operative period, you may experience some abdominal discomfort similar to period pain. Paracetamol (if you are not allergic to it) will usually control any discomfort, which generally subsides in 2 to 3 days. 

How do you decide who to give my eggs to?

We do try to match up characteristics where we can, of you and the recipient couple. Your eggs will go to the patient that is waiting for treatment at the time or to our frozen egg bank for use in the future. 

Will I have to stay in the clinic overnight?

All parts of the cycle are carried out on an outpatient basis, which does not require you to stay overnight.

Can I donate more than once?

You can donate more than once however this can be different for each donor. Under the ten-family limit rule, any single egg donor can only create a maximum of 10 families from her eggs.

What happens after the egg collection?

After your eggs have been collected, you will be taken to our private ward, where the nursing team will take over your care before you go home. Here, they will ensure you are feeling well enough to be discharged.

Due to the use of local anaesthetic and oral sedation, we recommend that you do not drive for 24 hours after egg recovery, so you will need to bring someone along with you to accompany you home.

Following egg collection, you may feel tired, bloated and have some mild abdominal pain. There is also the likelihood of some light vaginal bleeding for a few days afterwards. These symptoms are perfectly normal after egg recovery.

Should you need to take something for the pain, paracetamol is recommended. You will be given our contact information, including an emergency out-of-hours number that you can contact with any concerns you have once you get home, we will be at the other end of the phone should you need any aftercare.

Am I able to find out if a baby has been born from my egg donation?

Many donors like to find out if any babies have been born as a result of their egg donation. You are entitled to know if your eggs have resulted in a successful pregnancy, including the number of children that have been born, whether they are boys or girls, and the year of their birth. You will not be given any information which could lead to those children being identified as unfortunately we are unable to give that information.

What can the child know about me?

The law was changed in 2005 so that all new HFEA-registered donors are potentially identifiable to any conceived children once they reach the age of 18. Until then, they only have access to non-identifying information, such as your height, weight, hair, and eye colour. Once they are 18, they can then contact the HFEA and obtain further details. 

Will I be financially or legally liable for any children born from my donation?

The recipients of your donated eggs are the legal parents of any child born. Therefore, you have no financial or legal responsibility for any donor-conceived children now or in the future.

Will the recipients of my donor eggs ever know who I am?

Donations are made anonymously; recipient patients will not know who you are while going through the process. If a pregnancy occurs as a result of your donation, the expectant parents are usually given very basic information about you, which you put on your Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) form at the time of registering as a donor. 

 This information can include your hair colour, eye colour, and height. You can also write a short description of yourself called a ‘Pen Picture’, here you can include your interests, hobbies and skills. Along with a ‘Good Will’ message for the donor-conceived child. More detailed information is available to the child once it reaches the age of 18, which enables them to potentially identify you if they wish. 

What do egg donors that have donated with you - say about donating?

Our donors come from all walks of life - all with the same desire to help other women and all with something in common - great kindness, empathy, and commitment to giving the gift of life. Here is what one of our egg donors said about Manchester Donors.

"I was treated with greatest care during my stay at the clinic and I've also been under their care after my egg donation. I have to say they have a have highly trained team in every department.

I couldn't have asked for better treatment and clinic staff who took care of me during the whole process. I was informed about each step during the process. They have even designed an app which helps you with taking medications as well as appointments and important information.

The process of donating eggs itself was conducted in a very professional and caring way. Doctors and nurses informed me about everything and the team made me feel safe. If I could choose again I would donate my eggs again at this clinic without thinking twice."

Kamila

What's the next step?

Being an egg donor with Manchester Donors is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding things you can do. You can help to change someone’s life by being amazing. We would like to thank you for your interest in our FAQ’s, and for taking the time to consider giving the gift of life and becoming an egg donor.

If you would like to know more and feel that being an egg donor is right for you then you can apply online here to start off your egg donor application.

Do you have a monthly newsletter?

Yes - you can sign up for our newsletter here for all our latest news, blog and advice about becoming an egg donor. If you are still researching it or considering it – our monthly newsletter covers different questions and topics each month.

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0161 300 2734