See if you qualify for free egg freezing.
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Egg donation is an incredible opportunity to do something life-changing for another family and when you do it through Cofertility, also an opportunity to own your own fertility journey at the same time. But, how exactly does it work? In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process step-by-step.

Egg donation options:

While donating your eggs is a beautiful process, we’re not here to try to convince you that it’s going to be a walk in the park. The process involves many steps from initial health screenings, to medications and monitoring, and a minimally-invasive medical procedure for the retrieval itself. After deciding to donate, your first step is to explore your options for the type of donation cycle you’d like to participate in. There are two options:

Fresh egg donation cycles: With a fresh cycle, you won’t start the process of retrieving your eggs until after you match with intended parents who are seeking a donor. Members of our Split program, which allows you to freeze your eggs for free when you donate half of the eggs retrieved to another family, all participate in fresh egg donation cycles. Once there is a family interested in matching with you, you’ll start your retrieval process and after the eggs are retrieved, the donated portion will be given to the intended parents, embryos will be created with their chosen sperm source, and often, they will be used for an embryo transfer in the intended mother or surrogate right away. If you participated in our Split program, your portion of the eggs will be immediately frozen and stored for your future use.

Frozen egg donation cycles: If you work with an egg bank to donate, you will most likely participate in a frozen egg donation cycle. In this scenario, your eggs are harvested right away and listed among a catalog of available eggs that bank offers to intended parents. In most cases with these banks, you will not know if your eggs were ever chosen, if they were ever fertilized, or if they ever resulted in the live birth of a child.

The egg donation process with Cofertility

At Freeze by Co, we’re proud to offer one of the most innovative approaches to egg donation in the space. In the past, egg donation has been marketed to women as a quick, easy way to make some cash and as a result, has a deep-rooted history in exploitation, and, frankly, ickiness. That’s why from day one, we’ve set out to provide women and families with a better option.

Through our Split program, our members can freeze their eggs and store them for up to 10 years entirely for free when they donate half of the eggs retrieved to another family. Not only do we feel this allows for a more ethical approach to egg donation for all parties involved, but it also allows women to own their fertility journey while lifting another family up on theirs at the same time.

To get started and see if you qualify for our Split program, here’s how the process works:

Take the quiz

First things first, you’ll need to take our free, two-minute quiz to see if you pre-qualify for our program. You’ll answer questions about your age, location, and basic lifestyle history.

Submit your application

If you’re pre-qualified, you’ll then be taken to a portal where you’ll submit your full application. This goes into more detail about your personal and family medical history so we can determine your full eligibility for the program. You’ll also be asked to share some more information about your personality, motivations for donating, and photos of yourself. This is your opportunity to truly show off what makes you unique for the intended parents that are browsing our platform.

Program kick-off call

Once your application has been reviewed and approved by our clinical team, you’ll then undergo a short onboarding process. This includes a call with our team to go over the details of the program, signing some consent forms to ensure you’re fully onboard.

AMH test

Finally, after completing your call and sigining your consent forms, your last step is to have your AMH levels tested. This is done through a simple blood draw at your local lab to ensure you’re a good candidate for egg donation (don’t worry, the cost is fully covered). Once these steps are complete, your profile will be listed on our platform for intended parents to see.

Matching with intended parents and initial screenings

Once we have a family that’s interested in matching with you, we’ll reach out to you to let you know and ensure that you’re still available to move forward. Once the match is mutually accepted, your egg retrieval cycle will begin!

The egg donation process

  • Post-match physical exam: After matching with a family on our platform, you’ll undergo a physical exam to get official medical clearance for egg freezing and donation. This will be just like a regular physical you’d have at your own doctor, where they will take your vital statistics like your blood pressure, height, and weight. The doctor will also look to ensure that there are no signs of contagious diseases or risky behavior (signs of drug use, self-harm, etc.), as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires.
  • Gynecological exam: During this same appointment, a physician will also examine your ovaries to ensure these are functioning well. This means doing a (painless!) vaginal ultrasound to check your antral follicle count. This helps determine if there’s likely going to be enough eggs to successfully “split” with another family. 
  • Lab work: You’ll also undergo some bloodwork and urine testing to ensure you are free of any diseases that would disqualify you from egg freezing and donation, as well as look at your current hormone levels. 
  • Genetic screening: Both you and the intended parents’ sperm source (either the intended father or donor sperm) will undergo genetic screening. This is usually done through bloodwork or a cheek swab to ensure that there are no genetic red flags between both of your DNA. You’ll also have the opportunity to meet with a genetic counselor to discuss your results.
  • Psychological consult: This is where you’ll meet with a counselor to share more about why you're interested in becoming an egg donor. Be prepared to talk about yourself, your family, and any medical, psychological or substance-related factors the counselor should know. Overall, the counselor wants to make sure this is something that you’re giving your full informed consent to do, and that you understand the process thoroughly.
  • Legal agreement: Once your screenings are complete and the results have been approved by the intended parents physician, you’ll enter into a legal agreement between you and the IPs that outlines all of the terms of the donation process, specific to your match. We know anything legally-binding can sound scary but don’t worry — this is done to make sure all parties are equally protected during the process, and you’ll be provided with legal counsel at no cost to you to ensure you’re being represented fairly.

Your egg donation cycle

You’ve finished up your initial screenings, signed your agreement with the intended parents, and now it’s time to start your cycle! Here’s what that usually looks like:

  • Stimulating your ovaries: You will have to take medication to help your ovaries and help the eggs to grow successfully. You will need to inject the medication at home, but your doctor will show you how to do this and your Cofertility Member Advocate is also here to provide support.
  • The egg retrieval: When the time comes, and your eggs are ready, your doctor will give what's known as a "trigger shot" of a medication known as hCG. This will help the eggs finish maturing. Then about 36 hours later, it will be time for retrieval. For this, you'll be under light sedation at the clinic.
  • The split: If you’re donating eggs through Cofertility’s Split program, half of the eggs retrieved will be yours to keep. These will be frozen at this time and kept until you want them.
  • Finishing up: Right after retrieval, you may be a little hazy, but that will quickly dissipate. You'll have to rest for a day or two, but then you can resume your usual routine after that.

Summing it up

Understanding how egg donation works may seem overwhelming at first. But keep in mind that Cofertility will guide you throughout the entire process. No one expects you to know the next steps, and we’re here to help make this an incredible experience each step of the way.