Embryo Donation

• You might encounter a situation where your best choice of carrying a baby is to receive a donated embryo. The embryos are transferred into your uterus for pregnancy and delivery.

• The embryos are often already created by other couples undergoing fertility treatments. Sometimes they have been created from donor sperm and donor eggs for the purpose of embryo donation.

• This baby will not be genetically related to you or your partner. But of course, you will maintain a very important role in this child's life as its parents.

• Factors to consider when selecting an embryo donor:

• Unfortunately, most recipients don't have much of a selection for embryo donors because there usually aren't many embryos available for donation.

• Some fertility doctors and clinics arrange for embryo donations and do their best to match donors and recipients based upon ethnicity and physical traits.

• Be sure that your donor couple has been properly screened by the fertility clinic for medical history and a physical exam.

• Are the donors open to contact from the child once the child reaches legal age?

• You'll also want to engage the services of a reproductive law attorney. Have a legally binding contract between you and the donor couple. The key point is that the donor couple surrenders their rights to the embryos and any children conceived from them.

• Psychological counseling is usually recommended for all parties involved. Both the donor and recipient couples must understand the relevant ethical and psychosocial issues. You may also wish to explore additional circumstances with a fertility counselor.

• During the embryo donation procedure, you will be given various fertility medications to prepare your uterus for receiving the embryos. Your fertility specialist will monitor you by using pelvic ultrasound and blood tests.

• When the timing is right, the frozen embryos will be thawed in the laboratory and transferred into your uterus using the same techniques as with IVF.

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