|Introduction to the egg donation procedure in Cyprus
The egg donation (ED) process is done under Dr. Bar-Hava’s supervision in Israel and carried out in Cyprus (Because of Israeli legal restrictions). This complicates the process a bit but it’s still a friendly and achievable task.
The Zygi clinic is our chosen location for serving our patients who are in need for ED. We have been working with Zygi for the last 10 years and are highly pleased with the results. Zygi is based a half an hour drive from Larnaca airport, Cyprus. Larnaca is an international airport serving most airlines directly and is a 45 minute flight from Tel Aviv. The Zygi center is Run by Ms. Galina Rostovskaya, or Mr. Nikolay Sitkarev when she is away. You are invited to contact the Zygi unit directly – contact information: Email: email@example.com (site: www.ivfpgdcyprus.com) or by phone +357-24-333020 / +357-2499-1072, or by fax +357-24-99-1072. When contacting the clinic introduce yourself as patients of Dr. Bar Hava and they will give you all the needed information.
The donors are of Russian origin and are between 22-30 years old. All donors are healthy and fertile women with no previous significant medical history of mental / physical or genetic diseases. All donors went through extensive blood tests to rule out Aids, Hepatitis etc
Following your consultation with Dr. Bar Hava and in order to initiate the process please contact the unit at Zygi in order to get the list of donors for the relevant month (= The month you want to be treated). This list includes several details on each donor such as age, weight, hair and eye colors, education and occupation.
The male factor:
The sperm needs to be available at the Zygi unit on the day the donor eggs are aspirated, but it can be stored there ahead of time. If the sperm will be brought fresh ahead of time it will be frozen at the local lab for future use on the day of aspiration. If the sperm quality seems to be low( something that can be diagnosed during the freezing process), than a thawing test will be done on part of the sample and a recommendation will be made whether you should plan to provide a fresh sample on the day of aspiration.. In general, you should not be afraid of the freezing process since it serves as a “stress test” to the spermatozoa since only the strong healthy ones survive the freezing and thawing processes.
There are couples of ways to deliver the sperm to Cyprus: You may decide to fly in person. In that case please contact Zygi and notify them of the day you will arrive. They may arrange a transport from the airport to the unit where you can provide the sperm sample for freezing for future use (unless you decide to fly in on the day of aspiration).
Another good alternative that has proved itself is to utilize the fact that a lot of our patients are traveling to Cyprus (for their embryo transfer) and they can take your sperm with them. Since the flight to Cyprus is a short one, you can meet the couple / woman at the airport the morning of the flight, give them the fresh sperm in a sterile cup (can be given to you in our clinic). If you are interested in this option you may contact us at the clinic and we will hook you up with couples who gave their consent to assist.
Another alternative to send the sperm without personally flying to Cyprus is to use the services of a private plane that flies out of Tel Aviv everyday. This of course entails extra costs. The pilot’s name is Mr. Dror Halachmi and he may be contacted on +972-54-592-1611.
Women who are interested in using a sperm donor can fly their donor sperm over to Zygi In that case you will need to transfer it frozen using a thermos. You can get the thermos through “thermos clinic” – 972-3-6506800 or Mr. Alex Ram-972-2-5337760 / 972-544-676370.
Another alternative is to choose one from the Cyprus’s unit sperm bank. As in the women donors list you will receive a men donors list with the following details: age, origin, education, height, weight, color of eyes and hair and blood type. For those of you interested in a non Jewish donor this is a good solution.
Choosing the donor (12 mature eggs Vs. 6 mature eggs)
After you have chosen the egg donor, Pls notify Zygi so they may allocate the donor to you. You also need to decided whether you want to have 12 mature eggs or 6 mature eggs reserve for you (financial details can be found at the end of this document). The big advantage of reseerving 12 eggs is that large number of oocytes will probably result in a large number of fertilized oocytes (zygotes-2PN) which in turn will enable you to have a day 5 transfer (blastocyst transfer) of developed embryos with the highest implantation potential and probably with some spare frozen embryos for the next child (with the same genetic composition). The disadvantage is of course is the high financial cost. If you decide to have 6 mature eggs this will generally provide you with high quality embryos for day2-3 transfer and sometimes even frozen spare embryos.
The treatment plan
The traditional treatment plan for receiving egg-donation derived embryos is by synchronizing the recipient with the donor expected day of ovum pick up. This synchronization is done by over-ruling the recipient hormonal milieu by one shot of GnRH analog (usually Decapeptyl 3.75mg). After confirming down-regulation (by ultrasound and hormonal examination) the recipient start to get estrogen supplements and she will be ready for embryo transfer within 10-14 days usually. During this period her blood hormone levels and endometrium (the lining of the uterus) will be carefully monitored by our staff. When the recipient’s endometrial lining has thickened sufficiently, she will undergo a procedure called Pipelle. Thereafter the recipient will continue with the estrogen tablets and should be ready for the transfer. At this stage you will get detailed additional hormonal treatment plan which will take place starting at the donor aspiration date.
Another alternative is to perform the embryo transfer based on your ovulation cycle: If you have regular cycles it is advisable to try and synchronize your cycle with the donor aspiration dates. The idea behind this strategy is that your natural endometrium has a higher receptiveness potential than if he was hormonally prepared. Another advantage is of-course, that you won’t get hormonal medications by this method. The disadvantage is that if synchronization fails we will need to freeze the embryos on the first day of fertilization (zygotes-2PN stage). In that case you will do the transfer on the next month and still the natural implantation potential probably overcome the freezing disadvantage
After you choose what method you want to go with please provide Dr. Bar-Hava with the following details: When was your last menstrual period, how regular are your cycles and when the expected donor ovum pick-up dates are. According to these details he will plan your treatment schedule.
It is your responsibility to stay in touch with Zigy so they may update you when the Egg donor is ready for her egg retrieval. This is a good time to remind them to save you a blood sample of the donor (with no extra charge). You can take this sample back home and have it undergo extra genetics testing per your request (the most relevant ones are fragile X and SMA), but you can decide to send it for general DNA preparation for a later use when needed. All genetics testing can be done through our clinic in Israel.
The embryos transfer is usually done three – five days after the eggs were retrieved (The exact day changes according to amount of eggs that were retrieved and the fertilization results). If you wish to have the embryo undergo genetics testing, the transfer will always occur on Day five after the retrieval. This genetics testing called PGD is recommended in specific cases – Please consult with Dr. Bar-Hava regarding this matter. If indeed you are interested in performing PGD (Which is at extra cost, paid at Zygi), Pls notify our clinic as well as Zygi in advance.
Flights and arrival details
If you are flying to Cyprus from Israel, we recommend a travel agent that specializes in organizing flexible, cost effective flights and accommodations:
Mr. Dudi Shrem firstname.lastname@example.org or www.cyprus-center.com
Tel: +972-544-272722 or +972-9-7716367 or +972-9-7724938
You can be picked up from the airport by Zygi’s staff – let them know your arrival day.
You may fly to and back from Cyprus on the same day; this doesn’t affect the results of the treatment as there is no need to rest after the embryo transfer. Actually, there are no limitations after the transfer except that it is logic not to have sexual intercourse in the five days following the transfer.
Pregnancy test (blood exam) will take place two weeks after the eggs retrieval. If the answer is positive, please continue taking all your medications, until you are instructed otherwise by Dr. Bar Hava.
Reminders to take all the blood work you (and the spouse) were requested to take prior to starting this whole process. Another reminder is to start taking Folic Acid and a multi vitamin for pregnant women when starting this process and before you are pregnant.
We hope we have cleared up some of your questions. If you have further questions don’t hesitate to ask us. If you feel you wish to talk to couples / women who have undergone this procedure – Please let us know and we will try and arrange it.
We are here to help you and answer any of your questions.
Don’t hesitate to contact us and...Good luck!
Dr. Bar Hava and the staff
Summary of Zygi financial details
12 mature eggs – 6000 EURO (including ICSI)
6 mature eggs -4000 EURO (including ICSI)
Freezing extra embryos- 300 EURO
PGD – 2500 EURO (7 chromosomes)
Donor sperm -200 EURO