4 Psychological Risks of Egg Donation

Egg donation is on the rise as a method of helping infertile women achieve pregnancy and also for some, it is a way to earn money. If you have decided to donate your eggs, then you should be first aware of the entire process and after-effects of this procedure, as there are some potential psychological and physical problems associated with this process. This is the reason why some egg donors are subjected to medical and psychological screening before being selected as potential donors.

1. Conflict of Interest

For most of the infertility clinics, the egg recipient is the customer and the one who pays the fee. Hence, most of the clinics tend to give proper medical care to the recipients, and the donors are neglected after the retrieval of the eggs. This can directly create a conflict of interest in the mind of the egg donor, and can interfere with the informed consent or legal representation of the egg donor. This informed consent is based on the doctor–patient relationship, and when the donors do not have sufficient amount of interaction with the donors, it can lead to an issue of conflict of interest.

2. Emotional Possessiveness

In general, all egg donors may develop a fear of wondering about the potential children formed from their oocyte. Though egg donors donate only their egg, they could develop an emotional attachment with the child and can also wish to keep in touch with the egg recipient and the child in the future. Fear or worries may increase, as they will not probably know the result of the IVF or be able to see the child. On the contrary, there can be lot of issues arising out of role confusions among the donors and recipients when their identities are known to each other.

3. After-Effects on Biological Children

Many studies conducted among the egg donors over a period of time report that there are no known risks associated with egg donation. However, some studies have reported cases of cystic fibrosis or other medical conditions in the biological children of the donors. These reports give a psychological fear in the mind of the donors that their children might form a disorder because of the hormonal treatment they received during the egg donation.

4. Fear of Decreased Fertility

There are some studies which show that women get negatively affected by the egg donation. This implies that certain egg donors feel that their fertility decreases with the egg donation. This psychological feeling has potentially affected the ability of the donors to bear children in future.

As egg donation is an unregulated industry in the US, many women are deciding to donate their egg for personal or financial requirements. Many of them suffer due to psychological problems after the donation. There are certain studies which report that women who have donated eggs are at high risk of getting affected by ovarian cancer. There are no definite studies to prove these psychological risks of egg donation. Hence, it is necessary to know the emotional problems and after-effects before you decide to donate your eggs. 

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