Why do some women need an egg donor?

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 from 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 though a 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.


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