Skip to Main Content
Smiling egg donors

Egg Donation

Egg donation is an amazing gift that could help someone have a precious child of their own. It takes a special person to consider donating your eggs, and we design your donation journey to ensure that you feel supported and valued throughout.

Why become an egg donor?

  • Egg donation is an opportunity to give someone the chance of becoming a parent, and if you’re the kind of person who likes to help others, it can be a truly rewarding experience. Your generosity can make a real difference to someone’s life.
  • When you donate your eggs at our Care Fertility egg bank, you’ll receive £750 to cover your time and expenses.

If you’d like to chat through your decision with one of our donor enquiry team, you can contact us on 0808 178 2860. Our Care team will be happy to answer your questions and give you the information you need to help you decide whether egg donation is right for you.

Criteria for donating eggs in the UK

Egg donation is a very personal decision based on generosity and altruism. However, the health of our donors and children born is paramount, and there are some key criteria for our prospective egg donors:

  • Your age should be between 18 and 35, as the quality of eggs can reduce after age 36
  • You also need to be fit and healthy with no family history of hereditary illnesses
  • For your safety, your BMI should be below 35.

If you fit these criteria, you could be exactly who we’re looking for.

The process of donating your eggs

1. Medical assessment

Before you can undergo the egg donation procedure, you’ll first have a medical assessment. This involves:

  • Filling out a detailed medical questionnaire which details any genetic illness within your family.
  • Meeting a nurse from our donation team who will discuss the whole egg donation process with you in detail.
  • Some hormone blood tests.
  • A vaginal ultrasound scan.
  • Screening for infectious diseases and genetic and hereditary conditions.

2. Support and counselling for egg donors

Choosing to donate your eggs is a personal and important decision. So, after you’ve talked through the process with our donation team, we’ll also invite you to meet one of our experienced counsellors. They’ll talk to you about the ethical implications of egg donation and listen to any thoughts or worries you might have.

3. Egg donation consultation

Once you’re happy to go ahead with the egg donation, you’ll then meet one of our consultants. They’ll assess whether you’re suitable to be an egg donor, describe the donation journey in detail, and make a final decision. If they decide you fit our criteria things can move quickly; you might start the process as soon as two to four weeks later.

4. Stimulating your ovaries

The first step of the donation process is to stimulate your ovaries. To do this, you’ll need to give yourself daily injections for around twelve days, which we’ll teach you how to do. During this time, you’ll also need to come into the clinic on three or four mornings for ultrasound scans and blood tests.

5. Giving consent

Before we collect your eggs, we’ll ask you to sign a consent form. This document not only grants permission for us to collect your eggs but also establishes what you’d like us to do with your eggs in a number of different scenarios.

6. Egg collection

The technique we use to collect your eggs will be exactly the same as the one we use in an IVF cycle.

Egg collection is a non-surgical procedure. It is typically done under mild sedation or local anaesthetic; you will not need a general anaesthetic. No incision is made, and no stitches are necessary.

Using ultrasound as a guide, we use a needle to extract eggs from the ovarian follicles. At most, you’ll feel a few twinges, but we’d recommend having a short rest before going home.

7. After egg donation

After donating your eggs at our egg bank, you’ll be entitled to find out if any babies have been born as a result, and if so, the year they were born in, and their gender.

You can also write a brief goodwill message, which can be given to those children when they turn 18; you might like to tell them about how it felt to help their parents, your hobbies, or just how your friends would describe you.

If a child is born from your donation, they might choose to request information about who you are when they turn 18. Your counsellor can talk to you all about this during your session.

Egg donation payment: your compensation

Women who become egg donors at our egg bank receive compensation of £750 for each donation cycle.

The HFEA regulations state that in the UK it is illegal to pay for egg donation but that egg donors can receive compensation of up to £750 for each donation cycle. This sum covers any expenses for attending each appointment. 

Caucasian baby lying on blanket

“When I read about egg donation, I just instantly knew I was meant to do this. My only thought was, there are families out there who want a child, and this may be their only way. I need to give someone that chance. Care Fertility were absolutely amazing from start to finish, I felt incredibly supported and informed throughout.”

-One of our amazing donors

Egg donation FAQs

Women need egg donors for a variety of reasons. The most common reason women need donated eggs is age-related. As a woman gets older, ovarian function begins to decline and egg quality deteriorates, making it difficult to achieve a viable pregnancy. A woman may still be having regular menstrual cycles, but the eggs that are present are of such poor quality that the only way to successfully conceive is by using eggs donated by a younger woman.

Other reasons women may need donor eggs include:

  • Cancer treatment: Women who have been diagnosed with cancer may be suddenly faced with the possibility that their fertility is likely to be compromised by the life-saving treatment they need. And there is not always time to freeze their own eggs.
  • Premature ovarian failure: About one in a hundred women under the age of 40 will go through premature menopause. Sometimes this can happen very early on when they are in their teens or early twenties.
  • An inherited genetic condition: Using donated eggs will avoid passing the condition onto a child, and this may be the only way for some women to have a baby that survives and is fit and healthy.

Hear the inspiring stories of incredible egg donors who've helped change lives.

It's extremely unlikely that donating your eggs will have any negative effects on your own fertility.

In a normal donation cycle, you'll only donate as many eggs as you'd lose naturally in that month, which is usually around 10. This means you'll still have thousands of eggs left.

You'll have to have daily injections. The daily injections copy the action of the body's natural hormones and stimulate egg production; the injections are really straightforward, and we'll teach you how to do them at home. 

How much medication you'll need to take will depend on factors like your age, medical history, and size, and we'll give you a plan that's individual to you.

You'll need to come into the clinic between 4 and 7 times, though you can meet with your donation coordinator, have any counselling appointments, and have your consultation virtually.

We'll do whatever we can to make sure your donation isn't too disruptive.

During the short monitoring stage, we'll need you to attend the clinic on specific days, but the appointments won't take long and can be scheduled to suit you – you can come in any time from first thing in the morning.

It will be necessary to be off work on the day of your egg collection. Sometimes, donors feel more comfortable if they take a day off work immediately after their egg collection, but this is generally not necessary.  

In reality, you should only have to visit the clinic around six times, but we'll give you as much support as possible to make sure your visits are convenient and stress-free.

The daily injections may produce a little discomfort, but the egg collection will not hurt.

After the procedure, you'll rest in the clinic for a minimum of two hours, and then you'll be able to go home.  Our nursing team will look after you and they will make sure that you are feeling well enough to be discharged.

You might experience a little abdominal discomfort similar to period pain, but this should subside in two to three days and can easily be controlled with paracetamol. You may also have some light vaginal bleeding for a few days afterwards. These symptoms are perfectly normal after egg recovery.

Even though you haven’t had a general anaesthetic, we do recommend that you don’t drive for 24 hours after your egg collection procedure. If you can’t bring someone to drive you home, then we will organise a taxi for you.

Any children will be unable independently to trace you. However, the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority (HFEA) is required by law to keep a register of all donors, and any child conceived through your donation has the legal right to contact them for non-identifying information when they reach 16 years of age. When they reach 18, they can request identifying information about you, including your most recent address on the HFEA register. 

You will be given written notice that they are requesting this before your details are released.

It is generally considered to be in the best interests of a child that they have the right to know about their identity, and that is what the register is there for. 

No, you will not be financially or legally liable. 

The recipients of your donated eggs are the legal parents of any child born as a result of donated eggs. This means that you will have no financial or legal responsibility for any donor-conceived children now or in the future. 

Egg donations are done anonymously. Your identity will not be disclosed to anyone other than our egg bank clinic staff and the HFEA, which is required by law to keep a donor register.

If you have any other questions for our Care team, please get in touch.

Thank you to our donors

"Donors are truly an inspiration and I see the wonderful impact they have on creating life. I share the joy their gift brings to recipients – it is an amazing gift." 

Selina, Care Fertility Donation team