ELEVATE
Egg Donor Agency

Elevate Blog

Essays on the process of conceiving through IVF treatment and egg donation. Holding our heads, hearts and words together with passion and in hopes that parents can expand their families through Elevate.

Posts tagged egg donation near me
The 7 Phases of Egg Donation
phases of egg donation

You’ve decided to donate your eggs -- one of the most generous and selfless acts a woman could do -- but, you don’t know where to start. 

We get it, at first it may seem overwhelming as you step into the world of egg donation. But, we’re here to help. 

Read on as we walk you through the 7 phases of egg donation.

1. Application 

The first step is to apply with a reputable agency. There are many egg donation agencies out there, and unfortunately, they are not all created equal. 

Be sure to sign with an egg donor agency who are associated with the ASRM and Seeds Unions of Ethics. It’s important the agency you choose will adhere to the highest industry standards when it comes to the care of their donors.

At Elevate, we make it easy to apply. Just fill out our online application, and we’ll contact you from there.  

2. Acceptance

We are grateful for every woman who applies to be an egg donor. But, there are strict guidelines we must follow in regards to the donor’s health. These guidelines are enforced to protect the intended parents, the egg donor, and any embryos that may result from this process. 

Because of these guidelines and regulations, not every donor who applies will be accepted. Here are a few things we consider before accepting a donor:

  • Non-smoker

  • Has both ovaries

  • Between the ages of 20 and 30

  • Healthy height/weight ratio

  • No drug use

  • Regular menstrual cycles

  • Ready to take hormonal injections

In addition to these being physically healthy, a donor must also prove that she is punctual, reliable, kind, and mature enough to handle the egg donation process. 

3. Making a Match

When intended parents select a donor, we call this making a match. Finding the perfect donor can take intended parents a long time. Often they are searching for months and months before finally making a decision. 

It’s important to remain patient at this time. There is not a set time limit on how long a donor can be waiting to be matched. Just know that if you are matched, the intended parents have been looking for a long time for the perfect donor, and they have chosen you!

4. Medical Screening

After a donor is chosen, she will go through a rigorous screening process. Here are a few things to expect:

  • Medical screenings are done to make sure the donor is healthy. We test of any infectious disease and drug use at this time. We will also ask for a complete family medical history.

  • Fertility screenings are essential to determine a donor’s ability to produce eggs. We do this through pelvic exams and vaginal sonograms.

  • Genetic screening is used to raise awareness of any possible hereditary diseases.

  • Psychological screenings are used to makes sure the egg donor full understands any risks associated with donating her eggs, including any emotional side effects.

The screening process may take a few weeks to complete and is not meant to be stressful. It is our way of protecting our donors and giving the intended parents the highest chance of a successful cycle. 

5. Legal Arrangements

In a perfect world, everyone would agree, and there would be no need for legalities. But, to protect all parties involved, we do make sure that everyone signs legal contracts regarding the egg donation process. 

These contracts will outline all expectations, discuss compensation, define parental rights, and establish the relationship of the donor and the intended parents going forward. 

6. Medications and Injections

After contracts have been signed and screenings have been passed, the donor will be instructed on the medications and injections. Be prepared to take self-administered injections for about 7-10 days. 

Each donor will have an individualized schedule based on her own menstrual cycle. Our case manager will be with you every step of the way through this process in case you have any questions. 

7. Retrieval

When your body is ready, we will do your egg retrieval. The egg retrieval is a short 30-minute procedure done under light anesthetics. You will be able to go home that same day but will need to rest for about 24-48 hours. 

After that, you can resume all normal activities.

Egg Donation Explained

And there you have it, all 7 phases of egg donation explained.

Just think, after this process, you will have given a couple in need the opportunity to become a family. We can’t think of a better way to spend your time. 

So apply today, and let’s get this process started! 

The Ultimate Breakdown of Egg Donor Costs
1 dollar bill

$233,610.00

That's the average cost of raising a child until they are 18. But, all those expenses come after the baby is born. What about the cost to have the child? 

If you are a couple looking into egg donation, the price to start a family can feel overwhelming. And while it's hard to give an exact number of what an egg donor costs, here is the ultimate breakdown of precisely what you'll be paying for. 

This way, you'll know exactly where the money is going.

Agency Fees

Some couples may be tempted to find a donor on their own. But, there are invaluable benefits that come from working with an agency, including donor databases, background checks, and vast knowledge and experience. 

Agency fees cover the basic costs it takes to properly screen and vet a donor, and also connects a donor with the intended parents. From profile building to verifying donor education and health history, a lot of time is spent to make sure a donor is fit to come on at Elevate. The costs also go to the many billable hours it takes just to manage a donor and get her to the retrieval stage. From daily injection monitoring and dosage coaching, we also arrange all travel for the donor and perform pickups from the airports or retrieval location.

Just make sure you are clear about any refund policies. Find out exactly what will happen if an egg donor backs out, doesn't pass her evaluations, or fails to produce any eggs. At Elevate, we offer the most generous refund policies in the world of egg donation. We’ve been in your shoes, and aren’t here to tie you down.

Just remember not all agencies are created equal. Finding a reputable agency is the first step to having a successful egg donation experience. Your agency will be your source of information, your personal confidant, and the communication hub as you go through the egg donation process. 

Make sure you sign with an agency that follows the highest industry standards and is part of the ASRM and Seeds Union of Ethics.

Legal Service Fees

Legal contracts are used in the egg donation process to protect all parties involved. One crucial issue that is addressed is the individual rights of the egg donor and the intended parents. The egg donor will need to relinquish all rights to the eggs voluntarily and will have no parental responsibility for any children born using her eggs. 

In turn, the intended parents cannot hold the egg donor responsible if the child is born with any congenital disabilities. However, with PGT testing you can find out which embryos are the healthy ones and are viable to create a pregnancy. 

The donor and intended parents also need to agree with the amount of communication they will have with each other throughout and after the egg donation process, if any. Some matches want to be very open, while others prefer to keep things anonymous.

The legal fees cover all the time it will take to write up the individual contracts and get them signed by each party. These contracts are detailed and include all of the policies that can you give you and your donor peace of mind that everyone is literally on the same page. 

Medical Expenses

Intended parents will need to cover the medical expenses associated with the egg donation process. Including all clinical costs and medications. This will all be in your arrangement with your IVF clinic. We can help you with egg donor insurance. 

This additional insurance policy will protect the intended parents if there is any case of medical emergency with the donor. This way, the IPs will not be stuck paying for outrageous medical bills. Be sure to ask your agency if they have a preferred insurance company they like to use. 

Evaluation Fees

Every donor is required to go through a series of evaluations.

Medical Evaluation By Your IVF Physician 

As you can imagine, your donor must be healthy in every way possible. Medical evaluations will check for STDs, evaluate any drug use, and ask for a full medical history.

Medical evaluations will also make sure the donor has a healthy cycle and will be able to donate.  They will check her estrogen levels, AMH levels, resting follicle count and perform a general physical to ensure your donor is fit to donate. 

Psychological Evaluation

Every egg donor must go through a psychological evaluation. The information collected will help to determine if there are any behavioral patterns that we should be aware of. 

These evaluations will also look for any signs of cognitive disorders, and make sure she understands the long term effects of her decision.

Genetic Assessment

Both egg and sperm donors are required to go through genetic screenings. These screenings help determine if there is an increased risk of passing on a genetic condition. This is an essential step because the combination of genes could impact the health of the child. 

These assessments are performed by a genetic counselor who will offer you a full pedigree of the donor’s family health history. It gives you a good look at any major health concerns you might have in the donor’s family. The counselor will determine if the donor falls within the ASRM guidelines to donate.

Please note: the genetic assessment is separate from the genetic carrier mutation testing that will be done by your clinic through the donor’s blood work. 

Travel Expenses

Often travel is required for the donor. Unless she is local, she will need to travel to a reputable fertility clinic for her egg retrieval. The time between her trigger shot and the egg retrieval can be anywhere from 5 to 10 days. The intended parents are responsible for all airfare, food, and lodging.

Escrow Account

Escrow accounts are often set up to distribute the funds during the egg donation process. Having an escrow account allows the agency to have the money available to pay the clinics, travel expenses, and medication without having to call the intended parents over and over.

Having an escrow account helps keep the process moving without having to wait for payments.  

Egg Donor Costs

We get it, adding up egg donor costs can be overwhelming. But, think of the outcome. After all this, you'll get to hold a new baby in your arms. 

So don't hesitate to fill out an application today to get the process going. We're confident we can help you achieve your goal of growing a family. Find an agency and an IVF clinic that cares for both you and your pocketbook.

And you can always worry about the other $200,000 after the baby is born. 

Understanding the Pros and Cons of Egg Donation
thought bubbles with a lightbulb

You know what they say: Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.

Becoming an egg donor is a big decision, and chances are you’ve done some research online. The problem is there are a lot of voices out there spewing statements that aren’t true.

 Not sure what to believe? We’re here to set the record straight. 

If you’re thinking about becoming an egg donor, here’s the ultimate list of pros and cons of egg donation written by those who have experienced it for themselves.

Pros of Egg Donation

Changing Lives

Not to put it lightly, but egg donation changes lives. For the better. The intended parents we work with want nothing more than to have a baby. They have already dealt with heartache, long-suffering, and failed fertility treatments. They just need one major piece to the puzzle: a donor egg.

This is where you can come in. By donating your eggs, you are giving them the family they have always wanted. 

Compensation

Trust us, we know you’re not here for the money, but it’s still important to talk about it. Egg donors earn anywhere from $18,000 to $30,000 per egg donation. While that may not be enough to retire on, it is enough for you to get a jump-start on your goals and dreams.

And speaking of compensation, some donors can receive extra cash for their donations. Women who are of Jewish, Indian, or Asian descent are in high demand and intended parents are usually willing to pay more for their eggs.

Full Health Screening

Egg donation is a highly regulated industry. This means the donor must go through rigorous screenings before they are approved to become donors. 

These screenings include testing for common sexually transmitted diseases, common genetic disorders, and an analysis of your family history. There will also be a psychological evaluation. 

We can promise you that after your health screening, you will have a better idea of your overall health. 

No Long-Term Effects

According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, or ASRM, there are no studies that show any long term effects for those who donate eggs. This includes infertility issues, cancer, or premature menopause. 

So be assured, donating your eggs to a family in need, will not decrease your own chances of having a healthy baby of your own. 

Procedure is Simple

Some women would donate in a heartbeat but are afraid of the procedure. 

Egg Retrieval is a 20 to 30-minute outpatient procedure that is done under light sedation. You’ll be asked to take it easy for the rest of the day, and then you’ll be up and running again in no time. 

Cons of Egg Donation

At Elevate Egg Donor Agency, we believe in being upfront and transparent with our clients. So, here is a list of drawbacks when it comes to egg donation. 

The Process Can Be Involved

While the egg retrieval procedure itself if quick, there is some prep work that needs to be done prior.

Often our egg donors will commit, then end up waiting to be matched with intended parents. This is totally normal, but it does make it hard for us to tell you exactly when your egg retrieval will be. 

It may take some patience until the right couple has found their perfect donor. Once a match has been made, the donor will be required to take medication, have regular check-ups, and finally, start the injections. 

During this time, we ask the donor to be flexible and accommodating, as this often requires a little bit of travel. But, of course, the donor is always compensated for her time. 

Side Effects

As with any medical procedure, there is always the chance of some side effects. Side effects vary from donor to donor. Some experience nothing, with other experience some. Here are some side effects that you may experience:

  • Bloating

  • Moodiness

  • Cramping

  • Aching

  • PMS-like symptoms

  • Headaches

  • Nausea

  • Hot flashes

  • Breast Tenderness

One more side effects to be aware of is there is a higher chance of getting pregnant with multiples. This is because fertility drugs were involved, and there is a chance that not all the eggs were retrieved. 

So be extra careful if you decide to be sexually active during or after the egg donation procedure.

Psychological Difficulty

While most women to donate their eggs do so to help a family, it can still create some anxiety when they face the thought of contributing to the birth of a child. 

This is why we take our psychological evaluations very seriously. We only accept donors who fully understand what it means to donate their eggs to a family in need. 

No Guarantee

While we have come a long way with advanced screenings, over-stimulation of the ovaries, and genetic testing, there is always a chance that the eggs that are retrieved are unusable. 

We take every precaution possible, but just like anything else in life, there are no guarantees. 

Understanding the Pros and Cons of Egg Donation

We make sure that every person we work with understand the pros and cons of egg donation.  We believe that if everyone is informed and educated correctly, they will be able to make the best decision possible.

If you are thinking of becoming an egg donor, come check us out so we can put your mind at ease. After all, it’s best to get all the right answers from the real experts.

The 3 Best Tips We've Learned for Men Having Babies
father and baby hands together

Let’s talk about men having babies. And no, we don’t mean the 1994 film Junior starring Arnold Swartzenager.  We’re talking about gay men having families. Real families. 

You may not know this, but Elevate Egg Donor Agency was created because of our own personal experiences of finding the perfect donor. We’ve been through the journey of growing our own family, and we’re here to tell a few tips we’ve learned along the way. 

Here’s what a gay couple needs to know before they start:

1. Don’t Rush

Building a family is a process. It takes time, planning, and patience. Here are a few things to consider before you start:

Get on the Same Page

Make sure you and your partner are on the same page when it comes to having a family. More and more opportunities are becoming available for gay couples to become parents. Learn as much as you can about egg donations and surrogacy. Check out resources such as Men Having Babies for guidance and advice from other couples.

Timing is Everything

Sit down with your partner and figure out a realistic timeline. Having a baby could affect your career goals and/or your travel plans. Come up with a plan, so when the time comes to start a family, you are both ready and willing with realistic expectations.

Financially Set

And not scare you, but having a child through an egg donor and a surrogate can be expensive. But don’t panic yet, you can check out nonprofits such as Forming Families Foundation. They offer grants for families who are interested in IVF.

2. Know What You’re Looking For

We get it. Picking out a donor who your child will share genetics with is a big deal. But remember, just like picking a spouse, no one is perfect. 

Make a list with your partner and decide what traits are non-negotiable, then try to be flexible on the rest. Most couples like their donor to share the same heritage so they will share similar characteristics with their child. Other parents focus on specific talents and hobbies. 

Whatever your priorities are, we do our best to match you with the perfect donor. We are confident in our donors and only offer the best of best. 

3. Consider Your Relationship to the Donor

Traditionally, egg donors would remain anonymous. Now, there are more and more situations where the donor and intended parents can decide how just how much they are involved with each other. 

Some parties choose to meet and communicate during the retrieval process, while other donors and parents decide to stay involved with each other throughout the child’s life. This way, they can share significant milestones, communicate and offer insights, and even provide valuable medical background information. 

Men Having Babies

Men having babies can be a long road, but don’t get let that discourage you. We are here to help you every step of the way. We’re your biggest supporters and your biggest cheerleaders.

Come check us out, look around, read our story, and even register to see our donor database. There’s never been a better time to start planning your family. 

7 Facts No One Told You About Donating Eggs
baby basket

Clothes, food, and money.

All things we regularly donate to help those around us. 

But what does it mean to donate eggs? 

If you’re curious about donating eggs, here are 7 facts that may help you understand the process better.

1. Egg Donation is Highly Regulated

Just like any tissue or organ donation, egg donation is highly regulated. There are a lot of rules that agencies and clinics must follow to ensure the safety of all parties involved. 

First, all women who want to be egg donors must go through a series of physical and psychological screenings. 

These screenings address issues such as 

  • Travel to and from a Zika-infected country

  • Tattoos or piercings with nonsterile needles in the past 12 months

  • History of STDs

  • Any Drug Use

  • The regularity of Menstrual Cycles

  • Medical history

  • Mental Illness

These screenings not only protect the intended parents but the donors as well. Donors will receive detailed information regarding their own health.  

Only the women who are deemed healthy and emotionally sounds will be able to donate.

2. It Takes Time to Get Matched

The term ‘matched’ refers to when a match is made between intended parents and an egg donor. 

Choosing an egg donor is a big decision for the intended parents. They need to take their time to find the perfect donor for their family. Even if an egg donor is ready and willing to donate right away, she may need to show some patience. 

Egg donors don’t go through the retrieval process until they are matched with a couple who is ready for her eggs.

3. It’s Always a Good Idea to Use a Reputable Agency

Not all agencies are created equal. Make sure the agency you decide to work with adheres to the ASRM guidelines. These guidelines are in place to protect the integrity of the egg donation industry. 

Other signs of a good agency include:

  • Partnerships with the best fertility clinics

  • A quality database of donors

  • Rigorous screening process

  • Competitive compensation

  • Personal experience

4. All Kinds of Donors are Needed

Ivy league college degree. 

Athletic scholarship.

Accomplished musician. 

While these are all significant accomplishments, they are not necessary to have to be an egg donor. The truth is, we want to have a very diverse database. Every intended couple is looking for something different, and we want to be able to give them the best chance of finding what they want. 

In fact, Jewish, Indian, and Asian donors can actually earn more money. Donors in these ethnic groups are always in high demand because they are harder to find.

So regardless of your school or professional accomplishments, anyone who wants to donate is welcome to apply

5. Donating Eggs Takes 30 Minutes

Ok, let’s clarify. 

Yes, the retrieval process takes 30 minutes, but the entire process takes a little more time than that. 

First, the screening process can take up to six weeks, then we wait to be matched, and then the hormone treatments take two weeks.Don’t worry though, you’ll be able to work and play according to your own schedule up til a few days before the retrieval. 

The retrieval happens at a professional IVF clinic. A light sedative is given, and the eggs are extracted through a needle transvaginally. This procedure takes about 30 minutes. There is minimal pain, and the egg donor should be able to return to normal activities within the next day or two. 

6. Egg Donation Doesn’t Have to Be Anonymous

Unless of course, you want it to be. 

Some intended parents and donors decide to remain completely anonymous. In this case, the agency will handle all communications between the two parties. 

But, a recent trend has donors and parents meeting and getting to know each other. This can be beneficial for many reasons, including getting to know the woman your child will share DNA with. 

The connection can be short-term and only maintained during the egg donation process, or they can remain acquaintances and share the child’s significant milestones with each other. 

7. It’s Not All About the Money

Women who donate their eggs are not giving to get rich.

Think about it, The average compensation for egg donors is around $15,000. That’s barely enough to cover a year’s worth of college tuition or a down payment on an apartment. 

Most women who donate are doing so because they want to help those who can’t have a baby on their own. 

So, while the money helps, the altruism is the driving factor. 

Donating Eggs Explained

If you still have questions about donating eggs, don’t hesitate to check us out. We’re here for both intended parents and egg donors alike. 

So let’s all work together to find the perfect match.

Looking for Egg Donation Near Me? Here's Why Where You Live Doesn't Matter
egg donation locations

Location, location, location. 

We all know how important location is when looking for the perfect home. But, we’re not talking about real estate, we’re talking about babies. And when it comes to egg donors, we don’t need to worry about city and county lines.

In fact, here at Elevate, you can even forget about state and country lines as well. We are now an international agency that works with egg donors and intended parents from around the world.

So stop searching for “egg donor near me” and start focusing on the bigger picture: finding the perfect egg donor for your family -- no matter how far we need to travel to find her.  

Read on to learn why it’s essential to work with an international agency.

Don’t Settle

Your baby is going to share DNA with your egg donor. This means that your donor’s traits will become your baby’s traits. If you are looking for a particular race, religion, or ethnicity for your family, you may need to look beyond your own city limits for the right match. 

Here are Elevate, we are very sensitive to what intended parents want when looking for an egg donor. It’s understandable for intended parents to want to share similar traits with their babies, such as heritage, customs, and legacy. After all; these are the traits that most families share.

Sometimes this means looking a little farther and a little wider.

Choosing a Donor

Because of the beauty of the internet, it doesn’t matter where the egg donor lives. 

First, an egg donor will apply through our website. If we feel that she is a good fit for our agency, we can contact her through Skype or Facetime to do the initial face-face- interview. She will then be asked to fill out extensive questionnaires about her medical background. Soon after, we meet her in person for coffee, dinner or lunch at her convenience. 

After the egg donor submits her photos and her profile is posted on our site, any set of intended parents can choose her. They can even go onto the website under Intended Parents → Payment Portal and put a donor on hold. The hold lasts for five business days until you’ve made a final decision. The hold fee acts as a credit to the agency once you’ve decided to move forward. 

When a match is made, we coordinate between the egg donor and the intended parents to make sure all terms of the arrangements are acceptable to both parties. We then take it to your clinic and work with the nurse coordinator to get the donor in for her donor day. 

Making Travel Arrangements

If the egg donor doesn’t live close to a reputable fertility clinic, the intended parents are expected to cover all travel costs.

These costs include:

  • Airfare

  • Hotel accommodations

  • Ground transportation

  • A daily budget for food and other expenses

Typically, if an egg donor needs to travel to a fertility clinic, she’ll need anywhere from 5 to 9 days of hotel accommodations. This time includes appointments, retrieval, and recovery. 

We have travel specialists in our office who will arrange all travel arrangements. We are extremely conscious of budget and the expenditures covered by the intended parents. As parents who have been through this, we know it is important to save where we can. While we know you are aware of the time and energy that is required of egg donors through this process, we still economize costs

Don’t Worry About Egg Donation Near Me

Now you can have peace of mind as you search for the perfect egg donor. You can feel confident that no matter where your egg donor is from, we will help you make all the arrangements necessary to build your family. Don’t let location stop you from having the perfect family you’ve always wanted.  

And remember, you don’t ever need to search for “egg donation near me” again. Unless of course, it brought you to Elevate through this blog post. :)