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Egg Donation Risks and Side Effects

There are several side effects and risks that may be associated with being a Egg Donor. These side effects and risks are as follows:

Side effects that Egg Donors may or may not experience from the medications include: headaches, mood swings, bloating, nausea, and/or temporary stinging where the injection was administered. Egg Donors can expect to feel particularly bloated during the immediate period before and after the retrieval, since the hormone medications they take will cause their ovaries to swell and produce many eggs. Egg Donors may also experience temporary weight gain (e.g., several lbs.) until their next menstrual cycle, as a result of this bloating.

If the Egg Donor over-stimulates she may run the risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome, which is rare condition that typically occurs in less than 5% of Egg Donors. Severe cases of this syndrome may result in damage to the Egg Donor's ovaries. In less severe cases, Egg Donors may experience severe bloating and strong cramping. If you show symptoms consistent with hyperstimulation, your physician may reduce your medication dosage or terminate the egg donation cycle to avoid medical complications.

With regard to the retrieval procedure, Egg Donors are exposed to the same risks as they would be if they were undergoing any other routine invasive procedure. Egg Donors will be instructed to rest the day of the retrieval, but most Egg Donors return to their normal daily activities the day following the retrieval.

Potential Long Term Risks
Empirical studies have not demonstrated any definitive link between egg donation and infertility, cancer, or any other significant long-term health problems. Since egg donation is a relatively new procedure, however, we hope to learn more about the long-term effects of egg donation in the future when additional research becomes available.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Prior to beginning an egg donation cycle, it is highly recommended that Egg Donors thoroughly discuss all potential risks and side effects with the IVF physician they are assigned to work with.


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