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Preparing for IVF with donor egg

Wondering how to prepare your body for donor egg IVF? In this guide, we discuss steps you can take to prepare yourself physically and emotionally.

Medically verified
Written by Apricity Team

If you are about to begin IVF with donor eggs, you might be wondering what you can do to best prepare for the process or improve your chances of pregnancy.

IVF with donor eggs already has a good success rate. With Apricity, success rates for those using donor eggs exceed 40%, regardless of age and sit far above national averages. However, it’s understandable to want to do whatever you can to ensure a positive outcome.

In this guide, we advise on preparing for donor egg IVF which can help to get your body in an optimum condition for receiving an embryo and carrying a baby to term and protect your mental well-being throughout your IVF journey.

Information gathering

When navigating fertility issues and undergoing IVF with donor eggs, some patients struggle with the lack of control they have over their own bodies and the outcome at each stage of the process. Feeling fully informed before starting IVF can help with this.

Learn about the IVF process, particularly with donor eggs and ensure you understand the steps involved, potential risks, and success rates. Don’t be scared to ask your clinic any questions that you might have. You can also find a wealth of resources online. The HFEA website has plenty of information about donor conception, as does the Donor Conception Network. Apricity also has an online Fertility Hub, which is full of useful insights into IVF with donor eggs.

Medical evaluation

Before you can begin your fertility treatment, you’ll undergo a thorough medical evaluation to assess your reproductive health and suitability for IVF with donor eggs. This involves hormone tests, ultrasounds, and infectious disease screenings. At this point, you’ll also discuss any existing medical conditions or medications with your fertility specialist.

Financial planning

Although the cost of IVF can vary, it is a significant financial undertaking for many patients. Knowing how much your treatment will cost, budgeting accordingly, and scheduling expenses can help reduce finance-related stress and anxiety throughout the process.

Apricity believes in transparent, all-inclusive prices. This means that our pricing for IVF treatment covers everything you need including medication, monitoring, procedures, and any other necessary services. In partnership with Gaia Family, we also offer affordable payment plans to eligible patients.

Physical health

Optimising your physical health is an important aspect of preparing for donor egg IVF but is largely no different than someone who is trying to conceive without assistance.

A healthy diet

Focus on eating nutrient-dense, vitamin-rich, balanced meals. Avoid consuming alcohol or highly processed products. Instead, make sure you are drinking plenty of water and eating a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables, lean proteins, low-fat dairy, healthy fats, and whole grains.

Maintain your BMI

A person’s weight, and therefore BMI, does impact IVF success rates. Studies have shown that overweight and obese women have poorer outcomes following fertility treatment. Clinics will have different BMI access criteria for treatment but in general, maintaining a BMI of between 19 and 30 is recommended for IVF. You can lower or maintain your BMI with a healthy diet and regular exercise.

Gentle exercise

Exercise, particularly aerobic exercise is proven to reduce anxiety and stress, improve sleep and increase energy, stamina, and cardiovascular fitness. Studies also indicate that physical activity before IVF improves clinical pregnancy rates and live birth rates.

Unless you discuss your exercise routine with your doctor, stick to light, gentle activities such as walking, swimming, and stretching.

Sleep

Most adults require 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Good quality sleep is an important contributor to overall health and poor sleep is linked to a variety of physical, mental, behavioural and performance issues. Research has also shown there is a link between sleep quality and IVF pregnancy and live birth rates.

To prepare your body for IVF with donor eggs, ensure you have a consistent sleep routine with an optimal sleeping environment. Try to go to bed at the same time each day and avoid using electronics or consuming large meals or caffeine before sleep. Your bedroom should be dark, quiet and a comfortable temperature.

Holistic therapies

Many patients express the benefits of complementary therapies, such as acupuncture, reflexology, and abdominal massage in helping them prepare for IVF with donor eggs. There is some evidence to suggest that acupuncture, for example, can improve IVF success rates. Aside from this, however, these therapies can help decrease stress and anxiety and contribute to more positive mental health for women undergoing IVF treatment.

Mental and emotional health

When it comes to how to prepare your body for donor egg IVF, you should not overlook the importance of being in a positive headspace and having tools and techniques at your disposal for managing fertility treatment anxiety and stress.

Reduce stress

It is normal to feel tense as your treatment start date draws closer and as you go through the process. However, taking steps to reduce stress can contribute to better mental well-being and feeling more positive and relaxed overall. What works best differs between individuals, but some things you can try include:

  • Meditation

  • Breathing exercises

  • Connecting with others

  • Journalling

  • Doing activities you enjoy

  • Exercise

  • Listening to music

  • Laughing – by watching a funny film or chatting with a friend, for example

Build a support system

Building a support system that includes friends and family is a great way to ensure there are people around you who can offer emotional support during the IVF process.

You can also consider joining online forums or communities where individuals going through similar experiences can share insights and advice.

Counselling

Counselling is an important step in preparing for IVF with donor eggs. It will help you to think about any questions you have and allow you to work through your emotions. A counsellor can also work with you to develop coping strategies for stress and anxiety as you go through treatment. Apricity provides unlimited supportive counselling for egg donor recipients and with our at-home care services, you can access this support online from the privacy and comfort of your own home.

Ultimately, preparing for IVF with donor eggs is about prioritising your well-being. It takes a multi-faceted approach that focuses on all aspects of your health including the physical, mental, social, and financial. Preparation not only puts your body in the best condition for undergoing treatment, receiving an embryo and pregnancy but also helps create a positive headspace and a feeling of autonomy over the aspects of the process that you can control.

At Apricity, we have reimagined the fertility journey to reduce stress and provide robust support at a time when our patients need it the most. The majority of our patients only need to visit a fertility clinic between one and three times per cycle, rather than up to 10 times with a more traditional clinic, meaning you have more time to focus on looking after yourself.

If you’re preparing for IVF with donor eggs, we are here to support you at every stage, whether that’s through fertility tests or answering questions about the egg donation process. If you’d like to know more, you can book a free consultation with an Apricity fertility advisor today.

Written by Apricity Team

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Written by our group of fertility experts and doctors consultants

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