The Truth About Egg Donors: 5 Myths Debunked
If you’ve been thinking about becoming an egg donor or using donated eggs to have a child, you’ve probably found a lot of contradicting information.
It’s important to understand the process and know what to expect when it comes to such an important decision.
Let’s debunk some popular misconceptions so you can be armed with the right information.
Myth 1: It is painful and uncomfortable to donate eggs.
During the preparatory period before the egg donation takes place, donors must inject follicle stimulating hormones.
There can be some side effects, including a headache, upset stomach, and cold-like symptoms. The majority of the time, these effects are mild and short-lived.
Concerning the actual procedure where the eggs are retrieved, there is no surgical incision, it rarely takes longer than 15 minutes, and the donor is lightly sedated.
As with the hormones, women report only mild side effects. If you get some over-the-counter pain meds at the drugstore, you should feel fine.
Here’s the bottom line: there are some mild side effects you could experience as a donor, but most women report little to no pain.
Myth 2: Donating eggs will hurt my fertility.
There are a couple of common misconceptions that contribute to this myth.
One is that donating eggs will deplete your egg storage.
Women are born with hundreds of thousands of eggs. During the donation procedure, the number of eggs harvested is the number that a woman naturally produces during ovulation.
What does this mean? It means that you would only be donating the number you would naturally lose that month anyway.
Another misconception is that the hormones you take can hurt your fertility.
This is also false: the hormones you take as a donor are similar to your natural hormones, and will not cause infertility.
Myth 3: Donating eggs is detrimental to my health.
There have been claims that donating eggs can lead to breast or ovarian cancer.
But according to recent research, there’s no convincing evidence that egg donation causes cancer.
Myth 4: Anyone can be an egg donor, even someone who is uneducated or sick.
Donors go through a screening process in order to become donors and ensure the eggs donated are of good quality.
Some of the common requirements for donors are:
- Must have a high school diploma or equivalent
- Have a body mass index lower than 29
- Be in their 20s
- Have good physical and mental health
- Are a non-smoker who doesn’t use drugs
Depending on the clinic, there may be other requirements pertaining to personal and family history of cancer, heart disease, and psychiatric conditions.
Myth 5: Egg donors only want money.
While there is a financial component to being an egg donor, money is by no means the only motivator.
Choosing to donate eggs or use an egg donor is a big decision, but it can also be extremely rewarding.
Hopefully, this post has given you a better and more accurate understanding of egg donation.
If you have any thoughts, opinions, or experiences related to egg donation, feel free to leave a comment!