Comparative assessment of pre- and post-donation attitudes towards potential oocyte and embryo disposition and management among ovum donors in an oocyte donation programme

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In anonymous oocyte donation programmes, the disposition of retrieved oocytes and subsequent embryo management are at the discretion of the IVF programme and the oocyte recipients, as donors waive all rights following their donation. Nonetheless, donors are routinely made aware of ways in which oocytes and resulting embryos may be used and elect to proceed with the process even in the presence of reservations to some clinical scenarios before their donation. The aim of our study was to examine oocyte donors’ attitudes to oocyte and embryo disposition and management and how initial reservations change over the course of the donation process.


Oocyte donors in a university-based IVF programme were asked about their willingness to donate in relation to various clinical scenarios during the initial screening interview and at the post-donation exit interview. Results were tabulated as ‘yes’ or ‘no’.


At the pre-donation interview, 72% of donor candidates expressed reservations to one or more clinical scenarios. More reservations were expressed at the post-donation interview compared with the pre-donation interview. The greatest reservations were donating to recipients >50 years of age (P < 0.05). Despite this, 97% of donors were willing to donate again.


Oocyte donors’ attitudes towards various clinical scenarios changed following their donation, reflecting overall greater reservations following the donation process. Although speculative, donors may be more willing to assert their opinions or donor attitudes become more restrictive.

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