What is embryo adoption? What is the origin of the embryos?
The adoption of embryos is in the transfer of frozen embryos, left over from previous treatment of another couple. The embryos come from a cycle of in vitro fertilization (IVF). This method is performed with the intention of getting pregnant, in a couple who has unsuccessfully tried other methods of assisted reproduction. In this way, a couple donates their embryos anonymously and altruistically, and another couple receives them in “adoption.”
The couple who donates the embryos can donate them since, according to Spanish legislation, the possible destinations for the embryos can be the following:
- Cryopreservation for own treatments in the future.
- Donation for other patients.
- Destruction of the embryos.
- Donation for research.
These embryos can come from couples who have obtained embryos with their own gametes (eggs and sperm) or even by double donation, the donation of eggs and sperm.
What is the procedure in the embryo adoption?
First of all, the good health of the woman receiving the embryos must be checked to start the treatment, which is verified through a gynecological examination.
The treatment is very simple and not painful at all. Only the endometrium of the recipient should be prepared by medication, to transfer the embryos into her uterus and implantation occurs at the right time. The embryos are thawed prior to transfer.
In what cases is it recommended to adopt embryos?
It is increasingly common to use embryo adoption treatment in different cases, for example:
- Couples with long-term infertility, who have not achieved pregnancy with repeated cycles of in vitro fertilization.
- Women without a male partner, or homosexual couples.
- In cases of women with premature ovarian failure, menopause or who do not respond to ovarian stimulation.
- Patients with repeat abortions.
- Couples who consider adopting children for ethical reasons, but they wish to experience gestation.
- Because existing restrictive laws in other countries regarding embryo adoption is also common in foreign patients.
Frequently Asked Questions
- In the adoption of embryos are taken into account the physical characteristics of the couple that will receive the embryos?
In the same way that the donor choice is made when required, the center ensures that the embryos and the couples are assigned based on physical characteristics and medical compatibility.
- Are donated embryos always frozen?
Usually embryos, since they come from previous IVF cycles and couples have already decided not to want to transfer them to themselves, the embryos are frozen. For the time required for this process, a fresh donation is usually not made.
- When is the fate of the remaining IVF embryos decided?
Prior to the initiation of IVF treatment, the couple signs a document, stating their desire for possible embryos. One option is to donate them to other couples for reproductive purposes.
However, if in the future they change their opinion about the fate of these embryos, the couple can contact the center.
In any case, the best option is to consult with specialists who can recommend to you if the adoption of embryos is the best treatment for your situation.
C. Orjuela, Embryologist.
Vithas Perpetuo Internacional. Plaza del Doctor Gómez Ulla 15, Alicante.
Phone number: 965230397 / +34 606437458