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Can we donate embryos to someone we know?

(7 Posts)
UpYaKilt Mon 06-May-13 17:34:31

Hi there - have also posted this in conception.

We have been very lucky and conceived a now rampaging 2 yo on our third cycle of ICSI. We had 2 embryos frozen during the same cycle, which we are now certain we don't want to use and would like to give to others TTC rather than for research.
I've had a look at the rules for embryo donation and I would have been too old by about 6 months during the production cycle to donate via the standard scheme.
We were also thinking about friends who have also been TTC for a long time and wondering about offering them the embryos. Can we do this as a private donation? How would this work? I've had a trawl through various donation sites and can't really find much information.

Any information gratefully received. Thanks very much.

SuedeEffectPochette Mon 06-May-13 21:12:59

I believe embryo donation is treated in the same way as sperm/egg donation. Here is a snippet from the London Women's Clinic about known egg donors, and I think the same would probably apply to known embryo donors...... Also check out the Donor Conception Network website. You are very kind to think about your friends, but there are clearly lots of issues to explore. Sadly frozen embryos do not do as well as fresh, so I would think that the chance of conception with only two frosties is not very high, sadly, one or other may not survive the thaw......

Known Egg Donation

Some patients, particularly the younger ones with a premature menopause, consider egg donation from a friend or family member. This type of 'known donation' can be quite reassuring for the patient, who is secure in the knowledge of the donor's identity. The known egg donor must fit a number of criteria before they can be accepted:

Be between the ages of 18 and 35
Be a non-smoker
Fit and healthy with a BMI of 20-30
Her FSH levels on day 2/3 of the cycle must be less than 8iu/L, Oestradiol and LH must all be normal
Have no previous endometriosis or of having had one ovary removed
Have no history of transmissible disease
No personal or family history of inheritable disorders
An egg provider will not be accepted with untreated polycystic ovarian disease
A number of blood tests will also be required before treatment can take place.

'Intrafamilial' donation can raise ethical difficulties and counselling is always essential.

UpYaKilt Mon 06-May-13 22:37:18

Hmm, food for thought, thank you

SuedeEffectPochette Tue 07-May-13 14:56:33

Fertility Friends website has an "ask a lawyer" section so you could try asking there for specific queries... Good Luck with your decision...!

flossieraptor Tue 07-May-13 15:00:49

Egg donation is not the same as embryo donation at all. I had ICSI at London WOmen's and asked about embryo donation because I wanted to avoid leftover embryos. They pretty much told me not to bother because it's more like actual adoption.

Good luck smile

CajaDeLaMemoria Tue 07-May-13 15:02:47

Yes, Flossieraptor is right. Legally, embryo donation is much closer to adoption, and the processes reflect that.

worldgonecrazy Tue 07-May-13 15:14:55

I don't know but from what I read when we were undergoing IVF, I very much doubt it. People who are donating eggs/embryos have a lot of counselling before setting off on that journey.

If you are unsuccesful in your (extremely wonderful and generous) offer, please do reconsider offering up your embryos for research. The clinics don't just need embryos for the high-brow stuff such as stem cell research, they also need embryos for trainee staff to practice upon, and to test new methods. You may not be able to help your friends and family directly, but the research carried out using test embryos is why I am lucky enough to have a 3 year old DD. The generosity of some unknown couple somewhere, benefitted me immeasurably.

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