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Treatments with donated gametes

Donated egg cells

Donated egg cells are used when the production of egg cells of the woman is impaired, when their quality is insufficient or when there is a substantial risk for some serious hereditary disease. In Finland, hundreds of fertility treatments with donated egg cells are made every year.

Fertility treatments with donated egg cells are always IVFs or ICSIs (link). To stimulate the egg cell donor’s ovaries, hormones are used.  Then the mature egg cells can be collected and fertilized in the laboratory with spermatozoa either from the spouse or a donor. One egg donor can usually donate 4–12 egg cells, which all are used for the fertility treatment to one recipient.

After fertilization, the embryos are cultured for 2–5 days. Then one, or at most two, embryos are transferred to the womb of the woman being treated. Before embryo transfer, the uterus of the recipient is prepared for receiving the embryo with hormone treatment. The remaining high-quality embryos or, alternatively, all embryos may be frozen and used for frozen embryo transfers (link) later.

When donated egg cells are used, the likelihood of pregnancy is high. The likelihood when using fresh egg cells is 40–50% and slightly lower when frozen embryos are used.

According to the Act on Assisted Fertility Treatments the following information is recorded of the donor: ethnicity, height, eye color and hair color. All egg cell donors are registered, and the child born of donated gametes has, at age 18 years, the right to know the identity of the donor. The egg cell donor and the child born from using donated egg cells have no responsibilities nor rights with respect to each other. The egg cell donor may also be a close relative or friend of the recipient.

Donated spermatozoa

Occasionally, donated spermatozoa are the final and only possibility for a couple to have children.

If spermatozoa are not found in the semen nor in a testicle biopsy, fertilization may be performed with donated spermatozoa.

Self-sufficient women and women couples may also attend for fertility treatment to have a child. In these cases, donated spermatozoa are used for insemination by IVF. The treatment protocols are available elsewhere on our web pages.

For donation of spermatozoa, you must be healthy and below 46 years of age. The donor will be approved based on the results of a health check. The frozen spermatozoa are kept frozen in liquid nitrogen in small lots. Before the spermatozoa can be used for treatment, the donor undergoes testing for the following infections before donations and 6 months later: HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, gonorrhea and syphilis. Currently, Aura Klinikka obtains the donated spermatozoa for fertility treatments from Denmark and they are readily available.

At age 18 years, a child born out of fertility treatments where donated gametes have been used has the right to know the identity of the donor. All donors are registered in a donor’s register maintained by the National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira). The criteria for approval of spermatozoa and the obligation of disclosing the donor’s identity are in force also for donors in foreign countries.

When donated spermatozoa are used, it is important to discuss the needs of the person born out of these spermatozoa to know their biological origin and also how this may impact on the relations within the family and between the family and the outside world. The woman and her partner will be given the opportunity to discuss these matters with our psychologists.

You may book an appointment at Aura Klinikka for fertility treatment immediately when the desire for a child has arisen.

Psychologist’s services

It is known and science has shown that childlessness is a strenuous period of life which may affect the relationship between the couple and coping at work. Also, the infertility treatments may also add to the stress and challenges of everyday life. We at Aura Klinikka realize the important role of supporting our clients during the entire treatment process to help them cope and experience maximal wellbeing.

You are most welcome to book an appointment with our psychologists, whom you may visit alone or together without your partner.  You will be able to discuss in detail many problems, issues and circumstances related to childlessness and infertility. Such matters are, e.g., the feelings that childlessness raises, how well you can cope with the situation and details of the treatment itself. The psychologist will be able to provide you with mental and psychological tools to help you relax and control the level of stress that you may experience. The psychologist can also advise you on questions related to the use of donated gametes to treat infertility.