Thoughts on Egg sharing programmes

As grateful as I am to our NHS the clinic I am under the Heath Cardiff Wales has caused us so much stress all of which is avoidable. The communication there is horrendous. I find the communication actually more stressful than the procedures. We have one more frozen embryo there if it doesn't work I don't think il be taking my next NHS attempt and I am considering going privately. The cost of the egg sharing programme is so much cheaper. Does anyone have experience doing this ? Or any information ! Thank you at the end of my tether 😰

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  • Sorry I have no advice on egg sharing, good luck though xx

  • I did egg sharing with our cycles and ended up sharing with two different ladies. All I will say is make sure the clinic are up front as ours gave us a figure for how much it would cost us with me sharing eggs, but that figure didn't include the medication I would need to keep taking for the following 12 weeks after transfer. It added up to an extra 500ish pounds in the end I think with the extra drugs I needed to take. But that was my only downside and really that was just the clinic not being clear on prices, not the process itself.

    The actual cycles themselves I felt very looked after. You have lots of scans to keep track of how many follicles you are making and mine also did lots of blood tests to make sure I didn't get OHSS because you have to take higher doses of everything to make more eggs. You have to do blood tests before hand as well to make sure you are completely healthy and you have to fill out lots of forms. Our clinic have a mandatory session with a counsellor to make sure we were happy to go ahead and weren't being pressured to share. You can also write a little paragraph for the potential babies born from your embryos to read if they decide to find you in future.

    Basically you and the other couple are anonymous (unless you're sharing with someone you know, going in together is an option I think?). However the baby that will be born to the other couple can choose to contact you when they are 18 but they don't have to. I don't think you as the donor can contact them, at least I was told that. It's all down to the child. You are allowed to legally ask if the couple had a baby though.

    I'm not sure if it varies by clinic but I had to make a minimum of 12 eggs to be shared equally. If there is an extra one you get the extra one. I was lucky enough to make 28 eggs on the first round and (if I remember rightly about 13 on the second go) but if you can't make enough to share, you either have to pay the full amount of an IVF cycle to keep them yourself or make the decision to give all your eggs to the recipient. So that's the one thing I would be wary of - I actually wasn't aware of this until after our cycles which I found was appalling (that I wasn't told) but I was very lucky that I made lots of eggs so we never had to make that choice.

    I found there was a lot of stigma with donating eggs but I haven't regretted it. By sharing I am (fingers crossed) one week away from delivering the baby girl we've dreamt of all our lives and one of the ladies I donated to has her baby, while the other is pregnant. We also got a few frozen luckily so we have some for the future :) We helped each other recognise our dreams. I couldn't have done it without them either as we could never have afforded three tries (two fresh with egg sharing and one FET) privately. So personally everyday I wake up feeling like together we all created miracles and I haven't ever had a second thought :)

    I did buy a book though about egg donation (aimed at kids) so I can read to my little girl and so she can always be aware of the situation though as I think that's important.

    I hope I've been of some help. I know it's a daunting process either way so if I can help in any way please just ask :)

    Good luck with your next cycle!! Xxxx

  • Your story has given me so much hope! My husband and I have been ttc for 4 years and have now decided to go down the egg donation route as my ovaries were damaged by endometriosis. Even though I'm young my AMH is very low.

    I'm so grateful that this is an option for us and I hope that the outcome will be as bright for us as it was for you and the ladies you shared with. Xx

  • You're welcome I can't offer much advice from the recipient side but happy to advise if I can :) I think egg sharing is so beautiful that we get to help each other in this way. I was lucky enough to have all these eggs but no way to make a baby due to my severe PCOS and immunity to clomid. I'm so grateful to those ladies for sharing with me. Good luck in everything. I hope this little frozen embryo works for you but if you do have to go down the egg donation route here if I can help with anything :) I think a few ladies in here have had eggs from donors too so they should be able to offer advice :) fingers crossed for your FET xx

  • Thank you so much for your informative response ! I didn't even contemplate how much was involved but like you said if I can help another family and have our baby in return it's a win win for me ❤️ the only thing that I worry about if I don't end up with a baby at the end of it but the recipient does. I know that's an awful thing to say but I think I would really struggle with that ! But I suppose you would discuss all these feelings with a counsellor xxxx

  • Hi kittyk, what was the title of the book you bought please? It might help a friend of mine who had her child through sleep donation x

  • I recently had a consultation at the London Women's Clinic in Cardiff. The initial consultation cost me £100 (I think this was slightly discounted as we had been to their fertility fair beforehand). We discussed medical histories, previous IVF attempts and success rates with various options and have decided to try egg sharing with donor eggs.

    As KittyK says, before going into egg sharing it is necessary to meet with a counsellor to ensure that it is the right option (this is an HFEA requirement). This appointment is free of charge.

    The consultant explained that donors must be under 35 (I don't know if that's the same in other clinics) and that they go through a medical screening process. There is a minimum AMH level requirement as well. I think it was 15 but I'm not sure.

    They match donors and recipients in terms of physical features. Then they need to sync the donor's and recipient's cycles.

    They were very upfront about costs and success rates. I don't know how much they charge for the IVF drugs because as a recipient I will be going on the pill. My total cost is £6000 but may be more if we are successful and I need progesterone in early pregnancy.

    We were also informed about possible risks. For example if one party changes their mind and pulls out they would then have to cover the cost.

    I can't think of anything else at the moment.

    Good luck with your FET xxx

  • Hello, I'm also based in Cardiff but at the Heath currently under the NHS ! We are having a meeting with CRGW as we have heard good things about them ! I hope we get our babies soon ❤️

  • Yes I hope so too! All the best with it all. Fingers crossed we'll have our own success stories before long. Xx

  • Hi, I know of people who have transferred their NHS funding to a private clinic, this may be an option that is worth looking into, depending on whether you have access to private clinics near you xx

  • As your partner is a cf carrier, are you on the nhs pgd funding? I don't know if it applies in wales but in England you can elect to use this in London or Nottingham... maybe there's an alternative place you can take your nhs funding?

  • No way I didn't know this ! I'm definelty going to ask about it ! Thank you !! Xxxx

  • Thank you I think it might only apply if im a CF Carrier to, but it's definelty worth looking into thank you xxx

  • I'm not sure if you meet the criteria for pgd but I know cf meets the criteria in England. I'm surprised if it hasn't been raised with you... if they're not doing pgd then how do they know your frozen embies don't have cf?

  • Ah I see. Good luck xx

  • Thank you anyway I had the test and thankfully I'm not a carrier :) so our child is not at risk of having CF but could also be a carrier ! If this next one doesn't work il be looking into the testing anyway xxxx

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