Posted by Dr David Polson, Medical Director
It’s PCOS Awareness Month – but do you know what PCOS is? Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is thought to affect 1 in 5 women in the UK.
It’s the most common female hormone condition according to UK PCOS charity Verity, and it can cause ovulation problems together with other symptoms including weight gain.
If you’ve been diagnosed with PCOS, it doesn’t mean you can’t get pregnant. As it affects every woman differently, many women with the condition can conceive naturally, but many also need help through treatment such as IVF.
And for some women with PCOS, they may need an egg donor.
Why you may need an egg donor for PCOS
There is evidence to suggest that PCOS may affect egg quality. Usually, if you have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, a large number of eggs are collected during IVF but some of these may be immature.
It can mean that egg quality is poor, which means your eggs may fail to fertilise or develop to a stage suitable for transfer.
Using an egg donor for PCOS
Although PCOS doesn’t mean you automatically need an egg donor, some women with PCOS have repeated failed IVF cycles when trying to use their own eggs – so their best chance of a baby is to use donor eggs.
When using donor eggs if you have PCOS, you’ll be carefully prepared for embryo transfer using low doses of fertility drugs, which create the endometrial lining for the embryo to implant.
You’ll be monitored throughout to pinpoint the right time for transfer, keeping in mind how you respond and your PCOS diagnosis.
Does PCOS reduce chance of pregnancy with donor eggs?
Because you’ll be using healthy, mature eggs from a woman of peak fertile age (18-35 years old), your chance of pregnancy isn’t affected by your PCOS. Things that can affect pregnancy chances when using donor eggs include egg and embryo quality and how well the embryo implants.
At Manchester Fertility we use advanced embryo selection methods, including EmbryoScope time-lapse monitoring, to select the embryo for transfer that has the highest potential for pregnancy. These techniques have resulted in consistent and high success rates for treatment with donor eggs for patients of all ages and diagnosis.
Choosing an egg donor
If you’ve had failed IVF cycles because of PCOS and need to use an egg donor, we have UK egg donors immediately available. Our own egg donation programme, Manchester Donors, offers both fresh and frozen UK donor eggs to our patients with no waiting list. All our egg donors are HFEA screened and registered, and identifiable to your child in future.
You can even have treatment with the reassurance of a refund with us, through Access Fertility’s pre-paid plan for treatment with donor eggs, which gives you multiple discounted cycles and a money-back guarantee.
Treatment with donor eggs in Cheshire and Manchester
Speak to our Donation Team on 0161 300 2734 to talk through your options, including if you’d like to switch clinics and have treatment with donor eggs with us after failed cycles elsewhere. Or you can self-refer here, and we’ll be in touch.
David Polson is Manchester Fertility’s Medical Director. A Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist specialising in infertility and assisted conception. He joined the team in 1990 and is one of the lead consultants advising and guiding patients on their treatment choices. Specialising in ovu...
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