Egg donation might seem like a strange thing to do for money, but it’s actually a really helpful thing to do for those who are struggling with fertility. Let’s be real, if you’re looking for interesting and creative ways to make some cash, “Just how much for egg donation?” might be something that peaks your interest.
Plus, egg donor compensation is probably higher than you might expect. Egg donation one of the common methods used to help parents who are struggling to conceive. So much so, that there are many egg donor agencies. These agencies are the “middle man” for these donations. As a potential first-time egg donor, you probably have plenty of questions.
Why You Should Get Paid for Egg Donation
There are two reasons people decide to donate their eggs (generally). The first is a charitable and generous decision. You may genuinely want to help a prospective parent. The other is, quite frankly, a way to make an income. Whatever your reasons, donating eggs is a big commitment. The process isn’t all that time-consuming or difficult, but the idea of potentially having your eggs out there making babies you’ll never know about is kind of a big thing. You don’t get to know the intended parents, you’re just donating to an agency. You will also be poked and prodded, and even undergo a psychological evaluation. More on that in a minute. The extensive process combined with the fact that you’re donating life certainly qualifies for compensation.
How much money you can make for egg donation?
The financial compensation for egg donation varies by the agency, but apparently, the lowest rate for donor eggs is $4000 and it goes all the way up to $10,000 per cycle with some agencies. Most agencies include paid expenses including travel expenses for your egg retrieval procedure. Free fertility testing is included with most agencies. Access to your own fertility information is available to you for planning your own future as a parent.
There are several factors that will affect total compensation:
- Physical/mental health and medical history
- Ethnic background (there are some ethnicities that are in high demand)
- Travel requirements
- Number of donation cycles (usually limited to around six donations)
How long is the egg donation process
The egg donation process can vary by the agency as well, sometimes taking a little over a month and sometimes taking several months. Potential donors go through a screening process that typically begins with a detailed and extensive personal history and medical history questionnaire and an appointment for a psychological screening. Other screening will include a visit with a genetic counselor and a vigorous physical examination and blood tests with a reproductive endocrinologist. All medical expenses are covered and free to the donor with all agencies. Your overall physical health, mental health, and reproductive health will be examined thoroughly. All in all, it seems the work with an egg donor coordinator to get through the screening process takes several weeks, no matter the agency.
What does the egg retrieval process involve
The first step is to pass through the application process. Once approved, you will just wait (patiently, or not) to be selected by a recipient. Once selected, the processes of cycle synchronization and egg retrieval begin. The cycle synchronization is the process of taking birth control pills for several weeks to get in sync with the recipient. In the meantime, you’ll receive a series of injectable medications. One to temporarily stop the normal functioning of your ovaries and then hormone injections to stimulate egg production. The hormone injections must be done regularly and on a strict schedule. During this two-week period, monitoring takes place for progress. This requires frequent office visits. Some agencies may use slightly different processes, but typically after a time period like this the egg retrieval would be done and you would be compensated for your time, travel, and efforts.
No matter what happens with the eggs after they have been retrieved, you still get your total compensation from the egg donation agency for the commitment you made to the process.
What disqualifies you from donating your eggs
There are some reasons that may disqualify you from being an egg donor, including:
- Lifestyle habits (things like smoking, drug use)
- Health concerns (poor reproductive health, genetic disorders, obesity, etc)
- Use of some types of contraception (i.e. Depo-Provera)
- Inability or unwillingness to commit to scheduled appointments and the strict schedule of hormone injections
Things to think about before donating your eggs
While egg donation compensation is pretty attractive and being an egg donor is very altruistic, there are some things to consider before making that decision.
When you donate your eggs, you agree to give up all legal rights to the child that will be born from your egg. You have no parental rights, even if the intended parents end up unable or unwilling to care for the child later.
Some health risks involved in the egg donation process include:
- Unintended pregnancy (if you don’t follow the rules to avoid this)
- Weight gain
- Bleeding and infection with retrieval (complications that could happen with any surgical procedure)
- Medication side effects (hot flashes, vaginal dryness, fatigue, sleep problems, body aches, mood swings, abdominal pain, breast tenderness, headache, slight bloating)
If you’re thinking about becoming an egg donor, you’re probably going to do a ton of research. As with any voluntary medical procedure, there are pros and cons. These pros and cons will be different for everyone. Choosing to donate your eggs is a very personal decision. Although the total cost of being an egg donor only amounts to time and effort, the reward may still not be enough for you once you learn the details of the process.
Another positive that comes out of this process is free genetic testing, fertility testing, medical screening, and visits with fertility specialists. This can be really helpful in your own pursuit to start a family or just for more insight into your own health. Whatever you decide, we hope this information has helped you get started and answered some of your questions.
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Hi, I’m Jessica! I am wife to Chris, and mom to Kaiper, Alana and Koa. I am a graphic designer, website developer and aspiring author. In this space, I share about everything from parenting, working from home, food we cook, and lots of things for kids! Learn more about me here.