It is provided as an alternative for women who cannot produce their own eggs, such as in cases of premature menopause, advanced age, chemotherapy and surgery. Also, a woman may decide to become a recipient of donor eggs if she is the carrier of a specific genetic (hereditary) disease, in order to avoid the risk of a child being born with the disease.
Donor eggs are fertilized with sperm from the partner. Pursuant to Greek Law, the egg donor is anonymous and consequently the couple does not have access to her information, or she to theirs.
Egg donation is a voluntary and altruistic act. All donors are screened for diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, thalassemia, and family history of genetic diseases. Requests for donor eggs are usually extensive, so there is typically a waiting list.
A significant progress against the problem of finding oocyte donators is egg sharing. In this program, women undergoing IVF donate a portion of their eggs in an anonymous recipient, which covers a part of the costs.
In the event that sperm is not recovered either from ejaculation or from testicular biopsy, the couple may use sperm from a donor bank. Sperm is sourced from specially organized cryopreservation banks. Only the use of frozen sperm is permitted, and donors are thoroughly screened in accordance with international regulations.
All donors are submitted to extensive medical screening, as well as interviews, in order to determine their physical and mental health, as is the case for egg donors.
Donor selection is made following a discussion with the Center’s embryologists, based on the man’s characteristics and blood type. The same is true for egg donors. Pursuant to Greek Law, the sperm donor is anonymous and consequently the couple does not have access to his information, or he to theirs.