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Embryo Adoption

What is embryo adoption?

Embryo adoption at our Virginia fertility center allows women and men to use extra IVF embryos that another patient has donated. This process is legally and medically more like egg or sperm donation than traditional adoption. With this beautiful family-building option, patients can experience pregnancy, childbirth and parenthood. As a result, it is an excellent option for any patient who cannot conceive a child due to egg quality, serious genetic diseases or any other reason.

How does embryo adoption work?

At our Virginia fertility center, adopting an embryo involves an embryo transfer, which is just like the procedure used during an IVF cycle with frozen embryos. The main difference is that patients who are “adopting” the embryo follow a few extra steps before the transfer can take place. The process involves the following steps.

  • Health screening. Before moving forward, our team tests the hopeful mother to ensure she is healthy enough for pregnancy. The goal is to ensure there is a high likelihood that the use of a donor embryo will be successful.
  • Matching. The patients will meet with the fertility clinic or the embryo adoption agency to get matched with a donor embryo.
  • Preparation for transfer. We may prescribe medications to ensure that the woman’s body is prepared for pregnancy. We will monitor the development of her uterine lining carefully to determine the best time to perform the transfer.
  • Transfer. Using ultrasound guidance, Fady Sharara MD will transfer the chosen embryo to the implantation site in the woman’s uterus. We will continue to monitor her until we can determine whether the transfer has resulted in pregnancy.

Frozen embryos can be stored for many years and still result in healthy pregnancies and births. Prior to the adoption, donors and recipients must be tested for communicable diseases. Additionally, all donor embryos remain in isolation and undergo monitoring to minimize the risk of disease.

Fertility options for every family

Embryo adoption has been beneficial for many patients at our Virginia fertility center. It can help patients reduce the overall costs of IVF by avoiding the fertility medications used in ovarian stimulation and the egg retrieval. To learn more, contact our office.