All About Egg Donor Profiles

Making the decision to use an egg donor is not an easy decision to make. Reviewing egg donor profiles and knowing which donor to choose can be difficult and stressful. Fortunately, most infertility clinics will guide you throughout this process to help you make a decision on an egg donor that suits you best.

All about egg donor profiles
Your infertility clinic will help you get started in the egg donor process. When you begin reviewing egg donor profiles, you can expect to discover all sorts of information about each potential egg donor. You will be able to find out the following information about each donor:

  • Age
  • Ethnicity
  • Height and weight
  • Eye and hair color
  • Education and hobbies
  • Personal information about her family history
  • Her reasons for choosing to be an egg donor

You can also see pictures of each egg donor. It is important to take the time to review the data in each egg donor profile to narrow down which woman may be the best “fit” with your family.

Legal issues in choosing an egg donor
Egg donor profiles will give the donor’s birth date and legal age. Egg donors are usually over 21 and most are usually under age 35, and typically not older than 33.

Many states require that the donor be at least 21 years old to guarantee that she can legally enter into a contract. This requirement ensures that there is informed consent to the donation and that donor fully understands the process, risks, and legal ramifications.

The under 35-age requirement is enforced to ensure that the egg donor has healthy eggs and is likely to respond well to fertility drugs. As women age, their egg quality and quantity decrease; so the young age of the egg donor allows for higher probability of a successful pregnancy for the recipient.

Medical issues in choosing an egg donor
Also included in egg donor profiles is an extensive medical and psychological evaluation. These evaluations guarantee that the egg donor does not have any problems that would hinder the donation process nor does she have any communicable diseases that could be transferred to the child. It also ensures that the egg donor is mentally aware of the process and its outcome.

Qualities of an ideal egg donor profile
Ideal egg donor profiles may include the following donor qualities:

  • Young (between ages 21-35)
  • Normal ovarian reserve
  • No indication of impaired fertility
  • Normal body weight
  • Healthy medical history
  • Healthy genetic history
  • Mentally stable
  • Nonsmoker
  • Non drug or alcohol user
  • Not a carrier of infectious diseases such as HIV, AIDS, syphilis, hepatitis B and C, gonorrhea, Chlamydia, or HTLV-1 (a very rare virus associated with some cancers)

Choosing an egg donor at your fertility clinic
The process by which you will choose your donor varies by the program you go through. Some fertility clinics will find a match from egg donor profiles based on qualities that are similar to you such as body type, skin type, hair type and color, eye color, ethnicity, and height.

Once the clinic has found the best match, they may show you the woman’s profile. You can then decide whether to use her as a potential donor or not. Other clinics may select a few different egg donor profiles that are similar to you and then let you choose from that selection.

Some fertility clinics ask women to provide further information on egg donor profiles such as education level, hobbies, and childhood photos to help you get a better feel for the donor. Using this added information, you can review egg donor profiles and select the donor based on characteristics that you find to be important.

Of course, it should be noted that there is no evidence that certain characteristics provided on egg donor profiles are genetic. So, there is no guarantee your child will possess the attributes that you are seeking.

Choosing an anonymous egg donor
Once you’ve reviewed the egg donor profiles and selected the right donor, it’s important to consider the different types of donor relationships. Some donors wish to remain anonymous throughout the entire process. In fact, most egg donors are anonymous and are recruited through egg donation programs. 

Other programs allow for donors to have their identity revealed when your child is of a certain age. Some programs even set up a meeting between the donor and you, so you can get to know each other. Still other donor programs encourage you and the donor to have an open and ongoing relationship throughout the child’s life.

Choosing an egg donor that you know
Lastly, a donor may also be someone you already know such as a close friend or relative. When choosing an egg donor that you already know, it is very important to have them screened as well as to have legal counsel and a contractual relationship to avoid any possible complications.

Take your time when choosing an egg donor
Choosing an egg donor is ultimately a decision that must be made between you and you partner after extensive evaluation of egg donor profiles and discussion. You have to determine the type of relationship that you are most comfortable with.

As you may realize by now, the decision on choosing an egg donor is not one to be taken lightly. It is a decision that will affect the rest of your life. That’s why it is important to cautiously review egg donor profiles and discuss the risks and benefits when going through this process.

Ask a doctor about egg donation

Sources
  • IntegraMed: Egg Donation 101. 
  • New York State Department of Health: Becoming an Egg Donor. 
  • American Society for Reproductive Medicine: Third Party Reproduction (Sperm, egg, and embryo donation and surrogacy): A Guide for Patients. 
  • RESOLVE: The Medical Aspects of Egg Donation. American Pregnancy Association: Donor Eggs.