What is an Egg Donor Travel Cycle?
This last month, we’ve had one birth via surrogacy for a client from Italy, a UK couple cycling with an egg donor in Arizona and a completed donor egg and surrogacy cycle for a single dad from Australia. Donor Concierge case managers help intended parents from all over the world find egg donors and surrogates. There are a lot of moving parts to consider - finding a US clinic to work with, finding and matching with an egg donor and/or surrogate, coordinating cycles and finally going through the actual cycle. Throw in international flights, booking hotels and follow up appointments with your fertility clinic and it can seem like an insurmountable feat of logistical coordination.
When Vanessa got in touch with us from the UK, she and her husband Mark had tried unsuccessfully to find a donor through their London clinic. They decided they’d have more options of finding a suitable egg donor in the US but they didn’t know where to start. Faced with nearly one hundred agencies and an even greater number of clinic options, they turned to us for help. We found them an egg donor and they chose a clinic based on the donor's location.
Like many international clients, their first question was how many times do they need to come to the US clinic for treatment?
Dr. Jane Frederick of HRC Fertility says international patients can have all of their initial screenings for infectious diseases done in their home country and only one visit to her clinic is necessary. “I usually recommend a semen analysis as well as a sonohistogram if they plan to carry the pregnancy. Once the cycle is initiated, if they're using their own eggs, they will fly out two days before the egg donor retrieval and stay until harvest or until transfer to surrogate or self. If they are not using their own eggs or their own uterus, then I usually have them fly out at their convenience, do the FDA screens, and freeze the sperm in preparation for fresh cycle in the future. This would require one day in California at their convenience versus 7 to 10 days if they decide to stay for the transfer.”
USC Fertility IVF coordinator Tracey Desai concurs and says sometimes an extended visit is necessary. “If the intended mother will carry the pregnancy, we require them to be here for the entire cycle, as well as for the initial consult.” Desai, who works with Dr. Richard Paulson, adds that many times all communication can be completed via email and phone.
Choosing a clinic – if you are travelling from Europe, you might consider an east coast fertility clinic or from Asia and Australia, a clinic in California or Nevada might be a better option. We also have clients who work with a clinic that is closer to their egg donor or surrogate, in order to cut down on the cost of a travel cycle. In all cases, we encourage clients to do their research and find a doctor and clinic that feels right for them.
- When looking for a surrogate, consider where she lives. Some states are more ‘surrogate-friendly’ and it can save a lot of legal hassle if you work with a surrogate in a state that has more relaxed laws when it comes to surrogacy.
Michelle Laurie is a Senior Case Manager with Donor Concierge.
Want to know more? Why not schedule a free consultation. Donor Concierge has an e-book available to Intended Parents who work with us to find an egg donor, a surrogate or a sperm donor. We're here for you.