I'm considering donating eggs for my sister to have the baby that she has been chasing for three years. I was just planning to start for my second child when I found that it was possible for me to donate (I'm 36 and assumed I was too old to give, but evidently the clinic will make an exception for such a close relative.)
I'm in great health, a clean-living person, cook all our family's food from scratch. We live a frugal life so that we can afford the lead-free apartment and buy local farm-grown produce or organic seasonal food. I was keeping my body clean for my next baby, as well as for myself. I also am very engaged in trying to take care of my (AP raised) 3 year old, while working part time on a degree.
So you can imagine how I felt when I did a little research and uncovered all the potentially permanent side effects of Lupron (including memory loss, chronic pain, and bone density loss), as documented by endometriosis sufferers who received Lupron. The dosages and scheduling are different between endometriosis and infertility patients, of course,
The long term effects on donor, recipient, and child do not seem to be known, especially for the "off the label" use of Lupron in infertility. Also, I don't like the way that TAP, the company who makes Lupron, does their business (do a search on "Lupron litigation").
I'm don't want to compromise my health or reproductive future by taking this drug. There are other risks of egg donation, such as infection or ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome), as well, but when women have reported lasting effects from the Lupron, there doesn't seem to be any treatment for them.
On the other hand, the doctors don't recognize much potential for harm to the donor, and I would like to give my sister this happiness if it is within my power.
So I have the following questions for the community:
- Are there any other alternatives to Lupron for an egg donor?
- Has anyone had experience with "in vitro maturation", in which the donor only has 3 days of drugs?
- Are there any egg donors or recipients out there who have been tested for changes in bone density or other health indicators, since taking Lupron? What have you seen?
Thanks so much for your input!