Each year, thousands of women have trouble conceiving a baby and turn to in vitro fertilization, or IVF, to become pregnant. For those who don’t have healthy eggs to do IVF on their own, egg and embryo donors make it possible for a pregnancy to occur. Donor embryos come from two outside sources who supply both the egg and sperm in the event a male partner also has a limited or abnormal sperm.
When selecting donor embryos, recipients may select from anonymous or known donors. For anonymous donors, there are certain criteria set forth by the fertility clinic and you’ll be able to find the ideal donor who is between the ages of 21 and 29 and have completed required testing, which includes:
When selecting donor embryos, you have the option of combining an egg and sperm from two unrelated donors or frozen embryos donated by couples who will not use them. If you want a specific gender, your fertility specialist will examine embryos and test them for sex and any genetic disorders.
In order for your body to be ready for pregnancy, your fertility specialist will require you get on medication – usually progesterone and estrogen, to ready the uterus for an embryo. To ensure you have the preferred gender, the specialist will examine an embryo three to five days old under a microscope to determine what the gender is – and whether it is developing any genetic disorders.
Once the embryos are selected, they are implanted onto the uterus by way of a thin catheter through the cervix. While a fertility specialist suggests only implanting one embryo at a time to avoid carrying twins or sets of multiples, women the age of 40 or over often have four to five embryos implanted to ensure pregnancy during traditional IVF procedures. However, with gender selection procedures, specialists will only recommend two embryos at a time, as they have selected the healthiest quality embryos to begin with.
After implantation of the embryo, a pregnancy test will be taken two weeks later to confirm the embryos are thriving within the uterus.
Who’s a candidate for IVF with Embryo Donation and Gender Selection?
Women who are ideal candidates for the procedure include:
Benefits of IVF with Embryo Donation and Gender Selection
Women who are unable to produce healthy eggs – and have a partner with lower quality sperm – benefit greatly from procedures such as this. By using an embryo donation, a woman is still able to be pregnant despite begin over 40 years old and experiencing a decrease in egg production.
Gender selection is an important factor in the procedure, as it ensures a couple has a baby of the desired gender and a fertility specialist checks that no genetic abnormalities are present.
Cost of IVF with Embryo Donation and Gender Selection
In the United States, IVF is a pricey procedure – often running between $15 and $30,000 USD for the IVF and embryo donation. Each cycle costs approximately $12,000 USD and in some cases, multiple cycles are required for a healthy pregnancy. Gender selection procedures add $3 to $6,000 USD in additional costs. Abroad, such as in Thailand or Mexico, the same procedure typically costs one-third less than that of the United States.
Finding Fertility Doctors and Specialists
Obstetricians and gynecologists are trained to implement the initial treatments of infertility using Clomid. Such a physician or fertility specialist should be board certified in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Couples should find specialists who are a member of endocrinologist organizations or technologies. As such, they have completed medical school programs, followed by four years of residency training in obstetrics and gynecology, and then, two to three years of training in fertility within an approved program that results in board certification.
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