Having children later in life may be a growing trend, but it’s not always as easy as celebrities may make it seem. Unfortunately, the likelihood of pregnancy at 40 and beyond is significantly smaller than it is for younger women. Donor Egg Bank USA has contributed this article sharing about getting pregnant using frozen donor eggs. The opinions are of the author.
There are many reasons a couple may not try to conceive until they are older. They may have made a decision to wait for the right financial or employment situation, or it may be because the couple met later in life. Some couples may have already been trying for years to get pregnant, but have been unsuccessful. Regardless of the reason for waiting, it’s an unfortunate fact that older women are more likely to struggle with conceiving. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 30 percent of women aged 40 to 44 experience infertility.
Understandably, this can be disheartening news for many women, but it doesn’t mean you have to give up on your dream of having a family, or even enjoying a pregnancy. For many women over 40, the best chance of pregnancy success is with IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) using donated eggs.
Getting pregnant using frozen donor eggs
Fresh vs Frozen Donor Egg
Women considering IVF with donor egg may initially be drawn towards fresh eggs over of frozen eggs, without realizing the implications of each. It surprises many couples to learn that IVF with frozen donor eggs enjoys similar success rates to fresh eggs, but is a fraction of the cost and less invasive for the recipient.
Frozen donor egg recipients don’t have to worry about syncing their menstrual cycle with that of their donor, or run the risk of having no viable eggs retrieved during their cycle. Using frozen eggs also means the recipient can choose a time convenient to them to undergo their treatment and transfer.
Choosing Your Donor
The first thing you will need to do is identify a donor egg program or service with a high-quality egg donor database and screening process. You will want a program with a wide variety of egg donors to choose from, as well as important information about the donors, such as family medical history, physical characteristics, education, and accomplishments.
If using frozen donated eggs, once you have chosen your donor, arrangements can be made to ship her egg lot to your preferred fertility clinic. You will receive a lot of between five to eight mature eggs that can remain frozen in storage until you’re ready for the IVF transfer.
Transfer of Donor Eggs
Leading up to your transfer, you will take medication to thicken your uterine lining, and your fertility doctor will monitor your hormones and lining to pinpoint the ideal time for transfer. Next, the eggs are removed from storage and warmed, and fertilized with your partner’s sperm. Embryos resulting from the fertilized eggs are monitored for development over the next 3-5 days, with 1-2 of the most viable embryos selected for transfer. Ultrasound technology is used to transfer the embryo or embryos into your uterus via a thin catheter. The embryo transfer is painless for most women and doesn’t require an anaesthetic.
Waiting for Your Results
There will be a two-week period following your transfer, when you will be waiting to take a blood test to measure the level of HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin), also known as the pregnancy hormone. If you receive a positive result your pregnancy can proceed the same as any other.
Dealing with Your Emotions
Coming to terms with infertility and your options can elicit a range of strong emotions such as grief, anger, anxiety, fear, and sadness. Some couples may even feel guilt or blame themselves for their infertility. This can particularly be the case for older men and women who may have made a conscious decision to delay having a family. Thoughts like these may not be uncommon, but can cause unnecessary heartache and emotional stress.
You may find comfort in speaking to a medical professional or counselor about your situation. Many couples also obtain a greater sense of control by gaining a thorough understanding of the options available to them.
Conceiving after 40
If you’re 40 or older and are having trouble falling pregnant, donor egg IVF could be the option you’ve been looking for to help you conceive your dream baby.