Embryo Donation
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Embryo Donation

Embryo Donation

Embryo donation is an important method that gives couples who struggle with infertility problems the opportunity to become parents to experience the miracle of conceiving and giving birth. For couples who cannot have babies with other means, embryo donation makes it possible to start a family.

What is embryo donation?

Some couples who conceive by the IVF method require that other quality embryos that are not transferred be stored by cryopreservation (freezing) method for future use. The most important advantage of this method is that important IVF stages such as egg growth and retrieval do not need to be performed again.  After an embryo cryopreservation process is performed, it is the family’s right to decide on embryos. After deciding not to use it, it can be dissolved and destroyed or donated to another couple struggling with infertility.

When the embryo donation method is performed, the probability of delivery is approximately 35%. In addition, couples trying to conceive in a non-medically supported cycle have a success rate of about 20% to 25%.

Who is suitable for embryo donation?

There are many infertility problems where natural methods or other assisted reproductive techniques fail. A successful pregnancy may occur using embryo donation within the following conditions:

  • Both men and women have incurable infertility problems,
  • When it is requested that high-risk genetic disorders present in the woman and/or man are not transferred to the embryo,
  • Many unsuccessful IVF cycles are experienced due to both egg cells and sperm,
  • Embryo donation is an option when seeking an alternative method of pregnancy other than egg donation or sperm donation.

What are the processes of embryo donation?

First, reproductive endocrinology should be consulted to confirm that the woman can physically progress through embryo donation and carry a baby during pregnancy. Physically, the embryo donation process is similar to progress from the second half of an IVF cycle. Stages such as ovarian stimulation, egg, and sperm retrieval are skipped and the transfer process directly begins. When the woman’s uterine lining reaches the required maturity, the frozen embryo is dissolved for transfer. The embryo placed into a thin catheter is placed extending from the vagina to the uterus. Approximately 2 weeks later, a pregnancy test can be performed and the result can be learned.

Assessment, education, and support should be an important part of the plan for both embryo donors and embryo recipients. Participation in this process is often an opportunity for both parties to participate in the matching process and, in most cases, to decide on communication exchange and planning openness.

Is there a difference between embryo donation and adoption?

The term adoption is legally used to refer to the placement of a child in another family after birth. Since embryos are donated before a child is born, they are not evaluated under the same laws. Legal agreements and contract law are used to manage the embryo donation process.

Communication exchange possibilities in embryo donation are similar to the wide variety of openness options available in conventional infant adoption. Genetic donors and parents communicate at both a relaxed and open level about their continuation. Both embryo donors and recipients can choose the desired amount of communication before pairing. Therefore, matches can be made by considering preferences. After a match is made, a contract can be signed according to the terms agreed upon by both couples.

What should embryo recipients pay attention to during pregnancy?

A woman who conceives through embryo donation is evaluated for the possibility of maintaining pregnancy before the procedure. Therefore, the probability of a problem during pregnancy will be very low. As with all pregnant women, their diet should be healthy, regular physician checks should be made, the necessary medications should be taken, and stress should be avoided.