Top 5: Questions about Egg Donation

At Donor Concierge, we offer a free consultation, so intended parents can ask questions about the egg donation process and how we can help. We often hear the same questions over and over again. Here are the answers to our top five questions about egg donation.

Do Agencies Pre-screen Egg Donors?
When the agencies meet with potential donors, they’ll ask them to complete a very comprehensive application, detailing her health history, family health history, education and reasons for wanting to be a donor. Generally, agencies do not do a health or genetic pre-screening. Some agencies do a complete ovarian reserve test and IQ testing available, but most do not. Agencies are not medical institutions and they can’t afford to medically and psychologically screen donors who may or may not be chosen. Most agencies are open to asking the donor to have her AMH tested prior before an official match. But genetic testing and other medical screening requires the donor to be under the care of a physician, which can’t happen until there’s an official ‘match agreement.’

How Much is the Egg Donor’s Compensation?
“Donors are free agents and usually choose their own compensation,” says Gail Sexton Anderson, founder of Donor Concierge. The average compensation we see from our partner agencies ranges from $6,000-$10,000. Some donors request higher compensation based on previous cycle history.

Are Frozen Eggs Cheaper?
In the long run, maybe. While frozen egg banks can be a good choice for those intended parents who only want one child (you may only have 1-2 viable 5 day blastocysts), there is very little chance that you will be able to use the same donor eggs for a sibling cycle. If your cycle with that donor’s eggs doesn’t work, you may have to choose another. If you decide to match with a donor for a fresh cycle, all of the eggs retrieved during that cycle will belong to you, increasing the chances of creating healthy embryos, and hopefully, a positive pregnancy. Gail’s blog, Are Frozen Donor Egg Cycles The Best Option has a more detailed explanation.

Can I meet my donor?
Many of our clients want to meet, or at least skype with their donor prior to matching, in order to have more of a sense of who she is and what she looks like in person, beyond the profile. Some agencies (and donors) are okay with this and some are not. Our agency partners tell us that they don’t want their donors to feel like they are being judged - remember this is not a job interview, it’s about finding out whether this is someone that feels like she may be a good fit for your family. Many egg donors are more than happy to meet with intended parents, but it’s important that you not set this as an absolute criteria, or you may be disappointed if the donor you have your heart set on, decides she does not want to meet. This is something you should talk with the agency about before you match with a donor. We have found that a meeting between egg donor and intended parents can be mutually beneficial and creating an openness that is not only healthy for all, but for the future children too.

Do you guarantee that the match will be successful and we’ll get pregnant?
Unfortunately, no. There are so many factors involved in achieving a healthy pregnancy and many of these are beyond our control. We like to say that creating your family through donor conception involves not just planning, but also a degree of faith. Yes, there is a lot of science involved, but there is also the immeasurable human element that is life. Doctors tell us that every cycle is different and there are no guarantees. What we CAN guarantee is that we will curate a list of all the donor candidates that come as close as possible to your desired criteria, those who most closely match your clinic’s protocol, and who are listed as available.