Egg donation treatment

Why opt for IVF treatment with egg donation?

Treatment with egg donation may be a relevant option for couples if the woman is unable to produce eggs suitable for fertilisation, naturally or through fertility treatment. Failure to produce eggs at all, or problems with the quality of the eggs may be caused by: 

  • the woman’s age  
  • premature menopause (for physiological reasons or due to chemo or radiation therapy)
  • Turner syndrome (born without ovaries)
  • surgery involving removal of both fallopian tubes  

If the woman in the couple is a carrier of a hereditary disease that they don’t want to pass on to their child, treatment with donor eggs can be a way to still be able to have a child.

Is it the right option for you?

The decision to receive donor eggs is not one taken lightly. It’s important that you take your time to think through the decision.  During this process, our most important task is to give you all the information you need and answer all your questions about the treatment involved and the legal aspects of egg donation, to help you make the decision that feels right for you and only you can make.    

Before the treatment can start

Before the treatment can start, we need to carry out some medical examinations of you both. We need to know the quality of the man’s sperm, and we need to make sure the woman’s uterus is able to receive a fertilised egg. You’re both required to be tested for HIV, Hepatitis B (HbsAG and Anti-HBc) and Hepatitis C (Anti-HCV-Ab) before treatment can start. Blood samples can be taken here at the clinic. If you’ve been referred by your general practitioner, this is free of charge. 

Types of donation and consent forms

You’ll also need to decide on the type of donation you want. You can read more about the types of donation possible here. Of course our staff will be happy to discuss the implications of the various types with you.  When you have decided, you’ll be asked to sign a consent form to confirm you choice of donation type, and state that any child/children born as a result of the treatment will be yours, and that you will be legally obliged to provide for the child/children.   

Choice of donor

The next step in the process is to find the right donor for you. We take our starting point in the woman’s physical characteristics to find a donor that matches them. In addition we will try, as far as possible, to accommodate any individual wishes.

Screening of donors

All our donors go through extensive and rigorous screening, to make sure that they are both mentally and physically suited to act as donors. The screening starts with an interview, in which any family predispositions towards diseases are uncovered. This is followed by a physical examination involving a scan to see the position of the ovaries and pelvic conditions in general. Donors are required by law to be tested for HIV, hepatitis, syphilis, gonorrhoea, chlamydia and HTLV. We also examine the donor’s egg reserves.  

The treatment of the donor

Below you see a plan of what the treatment involves for the donor:

Step 1 On day 1 of the donor’s cycle, she books an appointment for day 2 of her cycle by phoning or emailing the clinic.
Step 2 On day 2, the donor comes to the clinic for a scan and the plan for her treatment. This is also the day she starts the hormone treatment by giving herself an injection once a day.
Step 3 On day 9, the donor comes in for a scan again. Here we measure the egg cells, count how many there are and check their size. We also find an appointment for the next scan.
Step 4 When the largest of the egg cells measure 18 mm in diameter, we enhance the maturing of the eggs by giving an ovulation-triggering injection, Ovitrelle. After a 36-hour wait, the eggs can be extracted (aspiration).
Step 5 The eggs are sucked out with a thin needle through the vaginal wall guided by ultrasound. Once the eggs have been extracted, and the man has donated a sperm sample, fertilisation takes place in the lab. Before the man leaves the clinic, he’ll be informed about the quality of the sperm sample. The next day we call you to inform you about the development of the eggs. And then we decide on the next step of the treatment.
Step 6 The fertilised eggs are cultivated in an embryoscope for 5-6 days. The eggs will then have reached the blastocyst stage. Cultivation until this stage makes it easier to select the eggs with the highest chance of a pregnancy.
Transfer

The best eggs will be transferred to your uterus. We plan the transfer together to make sure the transfer day fits you and your cycle. There are 3 options:

  • If it fits with your cycle, the transfer can take place on day 5 or 6 after the fertilisation of the eggs.
  • Alternatively, we can freeze the fertilised and most suitable eggs and transfer them in a subsequent cycle. Transfer can take place in a natural cycle or in a hormone-stimulated cycle. 
  • You can also choose to have the donor eggs frozen and let fertilization, cultivation and transfer take place at a later time. 

Ten days after transfer, you’ll have a pregnancy test (blood sample). This can take place at our clinic or at a local lab.

All eggs belong to you

Any eggs resulting from the egg donation treatment belong to you. Any surplus suitable eggs from your egg donation treatment can be frozen and stored for up to 5 years.

Types of donation

The clinic can offer anonymous donation, open donation and donation from a known donor.

Anonymous donation:

You and/or your child/children will have information about the donor’s basic profile; that is, the colour of her hair and eyes, height and weight and age at the time of donation. The anonymity is mutual and it is final and conclusive, which means that you and/or your child/children will never be able to receive any additional information about the donor. 

Open donation:

You and/or your child/children will have information about the donor’s basic profile; that is, the colour of her hair and eyes, height and weight and age at the time of donation. The child/children will have the right to obtain information about the donor’s identity, typically when turning 18.

Open donation with extended profile:

You and/or your child/children will have information about the donor’s basic profile; that is, the colour of her hair and eyes, height and weight and age at the time of donation. In addition to the donor’s basic profile, you and/or your child/children will have access to some additional information, for instance the donor’s job, hobbies, education, pictures of her as a baby etc. The child/children will have the right to obtain information about the donor’s identity, typically when turning 18.

Donation from a known donor:

In this type of donation, you know the donor and the donor knows you at the time of donation. The donor is not allowed to be closely related to the male partner; that is, she must not be his sister or cousin, or the daughter of his cousin, male or female. Also, the donor cannot be the mother or daughter of the receiving woman.

Donation must be 100% voluntary. In case of donation from a known donor, the clinic is under a legal obligation to carefully examine the donor’s reasons for donating, to make sure that the donation is made of her own free will. We do this at the first interview with the donor, at which you are not allowed to be present.

Rules and regulations and donor compensation

In Denmark, both the individual donor and you as receivers of donor eggs for treatment are free to choose the type of donation you want. All healthy women aged between 18 and 35 are allowed to donate eggs voluntarily. A donor is allowed to donate eggs at several clinics, for example both in the private and public sector. However, a donor is only allowed to donate eggs a maximum of 6 times altogether.

For all types of egg donation, the compensation a donor can receive amounts to DKK 7,000.