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What to Expect When You’re Trying to Expect: A Journey Through Egg Donation

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a blog by Arika Avedano, Northwest Senior Case Manager,Fertility SOURCE Companies (The Donor SOURCE and The Surrogacy SOURCE), September 3, 2013

Every expectant parent goes through a laundry list of questions, concerns and overall bewilderment at the process at hand. Throw in a little third-party reproduction and the process gets that much more amazing.

For a lot of people starting their in vitro fertilization (IVF) with egg donation journey, and even those in the thick of it, there is a lot of uncertainty of exactly what to expect during the process. This is completely normal, and you should be working with an agency whose Case Manager guides you along this imperfect path and catches you when you lose your footing.

As a general rule, you should expect the overall match (sometimes referred to as cycle, which is different than the time the donor spends on medications) to take 3-4 months from the time you secure your egg donor until she has her egg retrieval. The reason for such a lengthy process is that the egg donor needs to complete all of her screening. While agencies do all they can to ensure that the egg donor will meet all of your physician’s requirements, the only true way to know if she’s a candidate is through the medical screening completed with your reproductive endocrinologist (RE).

To break it down further, the 3-4 month process should follow a path similar to this:

  • Egg donor completes a genetic consultation within the first 2 weeks of you securing her. The genetic counselors report generally takes 3-5 days to be written and returned to both the agency and your fertility doctor’s office.
  • Egg donor completes psychological evaluation within the first 2 weeks of you securing her. The report generally takes 2 weeks to be written and returned to both the agency and your fertility doctor’s office.
  • Egg donor completes legal consultation within the first 3 weeks of you securing her. She will be instructed by her attorney to hold onto her contracts until she has met with your fertility doctor.
  • Egg donor completes her physical with your RE within the first 4-6 weeks of you securing her. As a general rule, her screening appointment is not scheduled until your IVF clinic has received a copy of her psychological report. Test results from her physical can take upwards of 3 weeks to arrive. Until all her test results are in, there is usually a lull with nothing happening.
  • Test results arrive, donor is cleared to proceed forward with the egg donation cycle and a calendar is written. As a general rule, the calendar is created and approved by all parties about 4 weeks prior to the start of any medications.
  • Medications begin, which takes 3-4 weeks in total.
  • At the end of medications, the donor’s egg retrieval will take place and your IVF transfer will be between 3 and 5 days later. Then the REAL fun begins!


Arika Avedano, our Senior Case Manager for Northern California. Oregon, Washington and Nevada, has worked extensively in both the medical and third-party reproductive fields. She has experience assisting ovum donors and intended parents in all capacities of the egg donation and surrogacy process. Arika's exceptional communication skills and commitment to professionalism guide our clients through the remarkable experience of egg donation with compassion and efficiency. Arika feels privileged to unite donors with intended parents and assist in the beautiful process of building a family.

Arika helps donors and recipients with egg donation in: Nevada (NV), San Francisco Bay Area (CA), Portland (OR), Seattle (WA) & Northern CA.

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