International Patient Stories

My husband and I began trying for a baby 5 years ago. 3 failed IUI cycles and three failed IVF cycles later I was told my eggs were of a poor quality and I needed to use a donor egg.

With few donors in England we waited a year for a donor. I got pregnant but lost it after a few weeks. We did not know what to do next until we met the SGFC staff in London. We were overwhelmed by the quantity of egg donors as well as the amount of information provided on the donor. To be able to pick a donor based on what was important to us as a couple was beyond our expectations.

Our first cycle happened quickly as a donor was found within 6 weeks. We travelled out to America, had the transfer and went home to wait. I did get pregnant again but sadly lost it again so soon.

By now, we were both shattered with what we had been through and decided on one last cycle before we accepted our life without children. We had a chat with Dr Levy and agreed on a tailored drug protocol.

The story ends beautifully as we now have two perfect little baby girls who have brought us and our family such joy. We are so grateful to SGFC for their expertise, care and vision. Our donor must have been a wonderful person as she has passed on to our little girls a very sweet and happy nature. We cannot thank her or SGFC enough.

However, I can also see a steely determination in their eyes just like me and I hope that they too won’t give up on what they want.


Anna & George traveled to the United States from the UK to pursue their dreams of parenthood using the Donor Egg Program.

Anna and George first pursued fertility treatments when Anna was 35-years-old. They tried in vitro fertilization (IVF) multiple times using her own eggs at a UK clinic with no success. Finally, the doctor concluded that her chances of conceiving using her own eggs were very low and recommended donor egg. However, Anna and George learned from their doctor that since donors are not paid in the UK, there are very few donor eggs available, a long wait list, and little or no choice of donors. Nor is there much if any flexibility about the timing of the embryo transfer. Anna said she joined a support group in the UK for donor-conceived children and their parents, and learned from others in the group that the donor egg wait time in the UK can be as long as two to three years. Among the group’s members, Anna is the only one who went overseas for treatment.

Her UK doctor has relationships with a fertility center in Spain and with Shady Grove Fertility Center in the US, which he refers many of his patients for donor egg treatment. Anna said that since she and her husband are fair skinned, they figured it more likely they would find an egg donor in the USA who resembled them than in Spain, where complexions can be somewhat darker. In addition, she found that SGFC offers more of a choice of donors then the center in Spain, and more information about each donor, which Anna said she found reassuring. The level of support and information at SGFC was superior, she said.

Anna said what also appealed to her about SGFC is the Shared Donor Egg and Shared Risk program, neither of which were options at the clinic in Spain. She said Shared Risk was a particularly big factor in choosing SGFC, as it does more than just lower the final cost of treatment. In this program, Anna and George would receive six donor eggs cycles for one flat fee and a 100% refund should she not have a baby or decide to stop treatment at anytime. With just one payment, Anna said, she was reassured that she could try again if the first cycle didn’t take. Once she and George decided to spend that money, they no longer had to worry about incremental payments for treatment, and they could set aside the financial concerns.

Since Anna used to travel frequently to the US for work, she was not daunted by the idea of crossing the Atlantic for fertility treatments, she said. She was able to conceive their son, James, with just two trips to Shady Grove Fertility.
On their first trip, she met the Shady Grove Fertility Center International Donor Egg team. She learned about the streamlined treatment process, and both she and George had tests done. Shady Grove Fertility also obtained some of George’s sperm and froze it. Then she and George returned home, where Anna underwent some hormone treatments with her local UK clinic, an SGFC partner. These treatments ensured that her uterus was ready for pregnancy.
Once they’d chosen a donor, Shady Grove Fertility Center inseminated the donor’s egg with George’s sperm. Anna returned to Shady Grove Fertility’s Maryland center area for the actual embryo transfer. The couple were lucky and got pregnant on the very first try, and their son, James, was born in November 2008.

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