18 December 2017

Age limit for egg donation in Spain

By the Editorial Comitee IVI Blog

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]With the strict anonymity laws surrounding sperm and egg donation (also known as oocyte donation) in Spain, people from all over the world travel to the country for infertility treatment. Anonymity is not guaranteed in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, and this has a knock-on effect on the availability of genetic material. Another factor is compensation, with some countries allowing egg and sperm donors to be paid a set fee, and some allowing only enough to cover the costs associated with donation. In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) treatment using donated eggs is one of the most sought-after treatments. Donors in Spain go through a rigorous examination to avoid genetic abnormalities and other issues, and of course there is both a lower and upper age limit on donation. With these regulations in place, patients can be sure of receiving the highest possible quality egg, giving them the best chance of success.


Lower age limit

The youngest a woman can be when donating eggs is 18 years old. This means that she is legally an adult, and responsible for her decisions. Allowing donation from the age of 18 ensures that young eggs can be used. In Spain, there are students and other young women who choose to donate, but laws surrounding compensation ensure that this remains truly altruistic. Egg donors will receive between €800 and €1000, only enough to cover the cost of the time off work and travel to and from the clinic.

All donors, whether they are older, younger, or somewhere in the middle, go through a rigorous set of examinations and questionnaires before being allowed to donate. They go through a gynaecological examination along with a series of tests for HIV/ AIDS, syphilis and hepatitis. They also provide medical histories including family background information, so the clinic is made aware of any potential issues. Finally, the donor must be in peak physical and mental health, and will not be allowed to donate if any concerns are raised by the clinic whatsoever.


Upper age limit

As women age, the chances of any children born to them being affected by Down’s, Edwards’ and Patau’s syndromes increase. There are other factors that affect these chances, but age does play a significant role. Another element that must not be overlooked is that fertility is at its highest in young women, peaking in the early twenties. Women become less fertile naturally from this point onwards, with fertility dropping more sharply as they approach 40 years old. The risk of miscarriage rises while the overall quality of the eggs declines. With this in mind, IVI’s upper age limit for egg donors is 35.

We have been careful to impose this upper age limit on egg donors to secure the highest possible chance that our patients will see their dream of conceiving come true. At IVI we have high success rates due to our expertise. In this regard, we let our results speak for themselves.

In terms of looking at fertility, women under the age of 35 are advised to try to conceive for a year before seeking medical advice. Women over this age are encouraged to speak to a medical professional after six months. This is because the chances of conceiving do begin to decline more rapidly around this age, and it is vital not to waste valuable time when trying for a baby


Who can use donated eggs?

In Spain, both same-sex and heterosexual couples are eligible for fertility treatments using donated eggs and sperm, as are single women who are hoping to conceive alone. IVI clinics are non-judgemental and open to anyone who requires our expertise. We boast the largest bank of frozen donated eggs in the world, and this, along with sustained high rates of donation, means that waiting times are short or non-existent. This is another advantage for patients travelling from abroad, and a reason why many people choose to travel to undergo treatments. We have 28 fertility clinics in Spain, 11 of which are international clinics suitable for English-speaking patients. This means that patients can choose the one that is most convenient for them, secure in the knowledge that they will be given the highest possible standard of care and, should they require donated eggs or sperm, genetic material of the highest possible quality.

The only information that can be passed to the patient about their donor is their blood type and age. Absolutely nothing else will be made available, meaning that the donor can be sure that they will not be contacted by potential children in the future. Once they have visited the clinic to donate their genetic material, their part is done. They will not know whether the eggs were used for couples or single women from Spain, or from one of the other countries worldwide that our patients travel from.


Why IVI?

IVI has a superb track record and is the world leader in fertility treatment. 90% of patients undergoing treatment with IVI reach their goal, and we have an accumulated pregnancy rate of 96% on the third attempt of IVF with egg donation. Not only are we keeping up with new developments in the field of fertility, we are also conducting research and forging new paths of our own. Around 5,000 patients undergo fertility treatments of some description with IVI each year, and we are behind the births of more than 160,000 babies to date. We guarantee a single donor for each recipient rather than sharing donors with more than one patient. Using this method we are also able to vitrify embryos for subsequent use. This means that children conceived using donated eggs may potentially have a sibling or siblings with whom they will share genetic material.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column]


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