Fertility Network UK
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Low Ovarian Reserve


We recently found out that the only way we can conceive is with an egg donation and a sperm retrieval or possible donor sperm. I am wondering if anybody would be prepared to share their experiences with a similar situation.

Think we are still in a state of shock and confusion and wondering which way to turn! Any advice from you would be greatly appreciated

3 Replies

Hi there. Sorry that you've been told your only hope lies with donor - it's a big step and it may feel like the end of the world at the moment, but for lots and lots of people donor gives hope where previously there wasn't any and can be a fabulous thing!

I also have low ovarian reserve and we ended up using donor eggs and donor sperm (in Spain) to have our little girls, and I remember that we found it scary and really upsetting when we were told, but I have to say that we soon became very comfortable with the idea of using donor eggs/sperm and now couldn't be happier. Donor is a big thing to get your head around, and there is loads to think about, both on the emotional side and on the practicalities / legalities, but there is a lot of information out there and lots of people who are happy to talk about their experiences. If you do want to talk, drop me an email on nicks1308@hotmail.com and we can arrange a time to talk.

Take care of yourselves at the moment, and don't make and rushed decisions!

Nic x


Hi, yes, we're currently going through a donor egg cycle. We were given 4 options after our 3rd round of ICSI, were the consultant thought we were down to a 5% chance: carry on, donor egg, adoption, or walk away. It took a long time to work out what option was best for us, we did a lot of reading (the INUK amazon site has some useful books), and talking. The thing that was one of the turning factors for us was to understand more fully about what it means to be a parent, which when you start asking that question genetics becomes a lower importance. However, being forced to ask those questions is really hard.

After we were more comfortable emotionally, we then started to look into the practicalities, and choosing firstly whether to look for a UK option or international option as there are differences in the legal rights that may affect what you choose. I discussed these with my UK clinic amongst other people. We're also going for Spanish treatment, but that doesn't mean that is right for you.

Good luck as you work your way together through this.

FG x



really sorry to read your news, its a really hard thing to deal with. I think you have to let yourself go through a grieving stage before you can make proper decisions.

I too was diagnosed with this and the impending early menopause, last summer. When I first found out I felt like I'd been hit by a bus! Its taken me quite a while to get my head around it and I'm having some counselling through GP to help. As my husband has grown up children from a previous marriage we are not entitled to NHS funding which is ridiculous! So we've spent a long time trying to save some money and work out where to go. Fortunately for me my sister has agreed to be our donor (all being OK with tests etc) so that's a relief for me, but throws up other problems as not that many countries allow known donors.

Anyway what I really wanted to say was I've just been to an open day at Create Health a clinic near Wimbledon which promotes natural and mild IVF and will not necessarily turn you away because you have low ovarian reserve. So we've changed our plans from trying Russia. I'm going to get retested by them to get a second opinion (just sold lots of shoes on ebay to pay for it haha), and they may well try natural IVF with MY own eggs, if they cant retrieve any I think I only pay for the scan. If it doesn't work then we will go there with my sister so she doesn't have to be pumped with so many drugs seeing as there is nothing wrong with her eggs.

very happy to chat to you whenever you feel like it


p.s big congrats to you Nic, sounds like you have some well deserved little ladies x


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