I thought I would start this initial blog by discussing four of the main
areas that I emphasize in my evaluation of an egg donor: her family mental
health history, her stability, her desire to be a donor, and her ability to
make an informed decision to be a donor.
donation process can trigger unresolved issues related to the abuse. Above all else, my hope is for the donor to have a positive experience.
and medications to be administered. A donor will need a lot of support throughout the process. There are many aspects in exploring a donor’s stability – her living situation, her career, her upbringing and current relationship with her parents and siblings, her social network, her personal relationships and any possible legal issues she may have experienced. It is important that a donor be able to form and sustain healthy relationships as well as manage conflict resolution. More importantly, you want to be sure that she will to do what she is supposed to do!
While initially enticed by the monetary compensation, most donors after
learning more about the process have an altruistic yearning to want to help
others while helping themselves. In determining a donor’s desire to help others, it is significant to understand how she learned about the process, why she wants to donate, if she has told others about her desire to donate, what she plans to do with the money she receives from the donation and how she feels about the future contact and
disposition of her eggs and the embryos they create.
stability and her motivation, it is very important to determine if the donor is
cognitively mature enough to make an informed decision to be a donor. I gather this information by exploring the donor’s educational background and her self-perception. This information determines if she knowledgeable enough to have the ability to educate herself about the egg donation process and understand the potential medical and psychological issues that may arise. Is she able to seek out information and ask questions or does she passively take the information given to her? Often I encourage donors to talk with other who have donated before to get peer guidance in addition to professional guidance. The bottom line on informed consent is “Does the donor really understand what she is agreeing
information to ensure suitability. We educate others and ourselves. We hope
that all parties are being truthful and forthright.
reproduction, which includes mental health assessments and evaluation of egg
donors and surrogates. Andrea’s focus on assisted reproduction stemmed from her own personal experience with infertility over 15 years ago when she was beginning her family. Since that time, Andrea has had three children, two with methods of assisted reproduction. She continues her professional growth in the field of infertility through research and involvement as a professional member of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine including their mental health professional group, the American Fertility Association, European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology and Resolve. Andrea is the Past Psychological Chairperson on the board of directors for the Egg Donation and Surrogacy Professional Association.