Long-term care & follow-up

Because the egg donation process is relatively new in the medical field, there have been no clinical studies that examine the long-term effects of egg donation.  Some donors have reported experiencing medical complications years after their last donation that they attribute to donating eggs.  Should any complications arise, you should be clear about your medical coverage with your agency and what, if anything, they are responsible for doing to help you.

Questions to ask:

What are the long term health concerns involved with egg donation?

One of the current debates in egg donation is the lack of long-term care and studies assessing the long-term health effects of egg donation. Currently, little is known about the long-term health risks, thus most programs do not offer post-care. It is important that you do your own research and assess whether the benefits outweigh the risks. There is no right or wrong answer, and you are encouraged to make the decision that you feel is best for you.

What if I find out later on that I have issues or complications from donating eggs?

When you sign your contract with your agency and/or the intended parent(s), make a copy for yourself and store it in a safe place.  Should you experience medical complications later in life, you can refer to your contract to see if the agency is responsible for providing you with any care or information.  Many agencies do not provide post-procedural care beyond 90 days after retrieval.  If you do develop complications later in life, inform your doctor that you were an egg donor and provide as much information about your donation cycle, the medications you took, and any side effects you experienced.

If one of my eggs results in a pregnancy, will I be notified?

Depending on your contract, the contract of the intended parent(s), and the agency- you might be able to find out if a birth resulted from your donation. However this differs from program to program and contract to contract. Please be aware that you may never know if your donation resulted in a birth.

Consideration: Fate of donated eggs

There is a possibility that no children will be conceived with your donated eggs or more than one child will be conceived, possibly for different recipients. Once you donate your eggs, their fate is entirely up to the recipient. You have no say about what happens to your eggs after they are retrieved.

Could my eggs be frozen and used at a later point? What will happen to my extra eggs?

There is also a chance that extra eggs could be frozen after donation. However, their viability decreases significantly upon freezing. It is important to remember that after donating you have no say over what the recipients do with the donated eggs. So it is possible that they would freeze the extras for later potential use.