IVF treatment with egg donation

Who is it for?

IVF treatment using donated eggs may be an option to consider for women who are unable to use their own eggs, for reasons which may include:

  • Premature menopause
  • Ovarian failure
  • Lack of egg production
  • Poor quality egg production
  • Loss of ovaries, due to previous treatment or surgery
  • Being at risk of passing on genetic conditions

Several of the above may be related to chronological age, and so egg donation is often a recommended option for women who have reached their 40’s at the time they wish to go ahead with IVF treatment, as their own eggs may no longer be suitable to use.

Who donates the eggs?

The eggs used in egg donor IVF treatment may come from unknown donors who have donated to a clinic or egg bank or from a donor known to the recipient who has chosen to donate only to that specific recipient. In some cases they may be donated through an egg sharing scheme, where a woman undergoing IVF treatment herself has agreed to donate some of her eggs to others in return for free or discounted treatment herself.

Who donates the sperm?

The sperm used in donor egg treatment can come from either the recipient’s male partner, if she has one, or alternatively from a sperm donor.

A patient’s view on egg donation:


Talk to us about IVF treatment with egg donation

If you would like to learn more about egg donation please contact us on 01925 202180 or email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk.

Implantation failure assessments

Failure to achieve a pregnancy in consecutive IVF cycles despite the transfer of good quality embryos  can be both frustrating and emotionally draining.

Here at RHG we are specialists in the investigation and treatment of recurrent implantation failure (RIF). We offer two different assessment packages to investigate possible causes of RIF.

The basic package includes an initial consultation, vaginal swabs, transvaginal ultrasound scan, chromosome analysis (karyotype) for both partners, thyroid hormone profile, coagulation profile, standard immune profile, full thrombophilia screen and follow-up consultation.

The comprehensive package includes an initial consultation, vaginal swabs, transvaginal ultrasound scan, chromosome analysis (karyotype) for both partners, thyroid hormone profile, coagulation profile, standard immune profile, full thrombophilia screen, diagnostic hysteroscopy, endometrial biopsy for uterine NK cells, peripheral NK cells assay panel, TH1:TH2 cytokines ratio, sperm DNA fragmentation and follow-up consultation.

To find out more or to book either of these packages, please contact us on 01925 202180 or email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk.

Embryoscope time lapse

Recurrent implantation failure refers to cases where good quality embryos have failed to implant following several IVF cycles for the same patient.

The failure could be due to either maternal or paternal factors or issues with the embryo. Maternal factors could include uterine abnormalities, thrombophilia, problems with the endometrium which make it non-receptive to the embryo, or immunological factors whilst paternal factors could be related to sperm. Issues related to the embryo could involve genetic abnormalities.

New methods of time-lapsing images of embryos, such as the Embryoscope system used here at RHG, make it possible for embryologists to closely monitor the development of embryos prior to transfer back into the patient’s uterus and to select those with the best potential for implantation.

To find out more please contact us on 01925 202180 or email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk.

Sperm Freezing

As a male below the age of 50, you’re probably not worrying about your fertility just yet.

Although it’s true that fertility problems tend to arise the older you get, in your younger years your sperm can be affected by your lifestyle choices, potentially limiting your chances of starting a family.

A great way to preserve and protect your fertility is to consider our sperm freezing treatment. We offer a quick and non-invasive procedure, which is fully regulated by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), and allows us to quickly preserve your semen, and thoroughly check the specimen once your sample is required.

This treatment is a key part of our fertility preservation services, and has been used successfully at RHG for many years.

Freezing sperm allows those with male fertility problems, or men undertaking medical treatments, such as chemotherapy, to protect their fertility at any age.

To find out more about sperm freezing, please call us on 01925 202180 or email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk

Fertility Consultations

Your initial consultation with your fertility specialist is an important moment.

It usually involves taking a detailed history  – not only of your fertility, but also about  your general health and that of your partner if you have one. Generally we would like if possible to arrange your initial fertility tests before the consultation, at an earlier visit to our clinic. These tests can also be arranged after the initial consultation and will involve assessing ovarian reserve, hormone levels, an ultrasound scan, and if you have a male partner a semen analysis.

If you have had tests or treatments carried out at other clinics please bring the reports with you. With the results available we will assess all the information, aim to help you understand the reason behind your infertility and discuss the most appropriate treatment for your requirements.

Deciding to start fertility treatment is a powerful step and we are here to assist you at every phase and stage of this equally exciting and stressful journey.

We encourage you to ask as many questions as possible, we are always happy to help and reassure you through one of the biggest decisions you will ever make and begin this journey with confidence.

How to book a consultation

If you would like to book a fertility consultation today, please contact us today on 01925 202180, email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk or contact us here.

What is the best age to freeze your eggs?

Egg freezing is a fertility preservation option if you are not considering having a baby at the present time but may wish to do so at some point in the future.

Eggs can be retrieved, frozen and stored for you to use once you reach a point in your life when you would like to try to achieve a pregnancy using the frozen eggs. It is known that the quality of eggs that women produces naturally deteriorates as they age, and therefore the younger a woman is at the point that she freezes her eggs, the better the quality of those eggs is likely to be and therefore the chances of a successful pregnancy and healthy baby are likely to be higher.

At RHG we recommend that women consider freezing their eggs before the age of 35, as this likely to give the optimum chance of a successful outcome, so if for example you freeze your eggs when you are 25, but are over 35 when you decide to use them, this means you will be trying to conceive using the eggs of a 25-year-old which are normally of a much higher quality than those produced when you are in your late thirties.

To find out more about the first steps towards egg freezing, contact us today on 01925 202180, email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk or contact us here.

Why women choose to freeze their eggs

Egg freezing may be carried out for a number of reasons. These could include:

  • Social reasons – women who are concerned that their fertility may decline before they find the right partner or situation in which to have a child.
  • Medical reasons –  women who have a medical condition or treatment which may reduce their fertility.
  • Occupational reasons – women whose occupations could lead to a fertility affecting injury or even death, e.g. members of the Armed Forces.
  • Gender reassignment cases of females transitioning to males.

At RHG eggs are immediately frozen after retrieval using a technique called vitrification and stored in liquid nitrogen until the patient is ready to undergo treatment using the eggs. When the patient is ready, her eggs are thawed, analysed, and fertilised using intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). The highest quality sperm is injected into the egg and the best quality embryos will be selected for transfer back into the patient’s womb.

The introduction of vitrification has led to significantly higher chances of typically over 80% of the eggs surviving both the freezing and the thawing processes and therefore improved chances of positive outcomes for patients using their own frozen eggs in IVF treatment.

To find out more please call us on 01925 202180, email us at info@reproductivehealthgroup.co.uk or contact us here.

Greater Lancashire Hospital

We are delighted to announce that we have teamed up with renowned private healthcare providers Greater Lancashire Hospital to launch a new, exciting IVF service locally.

This new collaboration is now at the forefront of women’s health, IVF and fertility care in the North West.

Here at RHG we are known for our highest standards of treatment and levels of compassionate care, and we are delighted to team up with the Greater Lancashire Hospital who have handpicked a team of consultants with the highest quality and experience in the field of women’s health to lead the new service.

Norann RozarioNorann Rozario

Norann has over 30 years experience as a nurse over a wide variety of disciplines. Norann has this to say about the new service “I’m very much looking forward to this new collaboration as women’s health has always been a field that I am especially interested in. I’m also looking forward to working alongside Mr Abdo, who is not only an expert in his field but also an approachable and caring physician”.

Khalil AbdoKhalil Abdo

Mr Abdo is a world renowned and respected Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist who has amassed a wealth of experience, expertise and knowledge in his 30 year career working in women’s health. Colleagues and patients alike are quick to praise Khalil for his understanding and sympathetic approach.

Together our renowned, caring teams means this service will be one of the first in Lancashire to offer integrated women’s health and fertility services locally, with a focus on providing the best possible experience for all patients.

Would you like to find out more about this exciting new IVF Service? Please contact our team here or call us on 01925 202 180.

Embryo implantation failure tests

Embryo implantation failure is part of what we called the dreaded diagnosis of unexplained infertility where people are putting out so much time, effort, money, emotion and yet it keeps repeating with each IVF cycles.

For unexplained failure of implantation we would say that it is usually two cycles of really good embryos that are transferred, with proper number of embryos, easy transfer, the cycle looking great but the outcome is either not getting pregnant or even worse those early slowly rising HCG levels where everybody knows it’s just a matter of time until it ends in a miscarriage. At RHG, we try to give her a chance of having nausea, vomiting, breast tenderness, and a 20-30% chance of caesarean section because we believe she is going to make a good incubator if we can select the best investigation and treatment approach.

The treatments we offer help us tailor her next treatment cycle closely to her needs. Around one-third of implantation failure cases are due to embryo abnormalities. And we know sometimes an embryo can be perfect and still can’t implant due to her womb lining. Our extensive recurrent implantation tests help us look into the embryo factors, paternal factors, endometrial tests, and maternal factors. Briefly they assess the mother’s clotting profile, immune screening, levels of uterine natural killer cells and autoantibodies. Hysteroscopy is a test which allows us to assess the womb cavity by direct viewing and carry out treatments if required. High levels of sperm DNA fragmentation have been linked with miscarriage and treatment options such as testicular sperm extraction for ICSI can benefit those couples.  Preimplantation genetic testing helps us select the best euploid embryo while time lapse imaging of the embryo (Embryoscope) monitors embryo cell divisions and these cell time points help predict further development potential. Overall, they allow us to select the best embryo which will be more likely to implant.

Putting Male Health First

When a couple fails to conceive, males are found to be solely responsible in 20-30% of cases and contribute to almost 50% of cases overall.

Professor Luciano Nardo, founder and medical director of Reproductive Health Group (RHG) in Daresbury, has dedicated his entire career to helping couples who are seeking to conceive a child and argues that while female reproductive health is often at the forefront of a woman’s mind, men can easily overlook or ignore their own reproductive health.

He says: ‘Couples that have been unable to achieve conception after one year should be investigated. One in eight couples have problems with conceiving their first child and the fact that in just under half of these there will be a male factor that is contributing demonstrates it is important always to consider the male.’

‘Sadly, the provision for male infertility within the NHS is rather poor, with facilities still very female orientated both locally and nationally. Ideally, all diagnostic and treatment procedures should take place under one roof, not least because of ethical and legal concerns over the movement of sperm samples between locations. At RHG we have all the expertise and clinical facilities required to undertake all relevant research and procedures. We have also recently appointed both Professor Vijay Sangar, Consultant Urological Surgeon, and Mr Arie Parnham, Consultant Urologist and Andrologist (specifically male diseases and conditions) and specialist in male fertility.’

The first step for any couple seeking support with infertility is to see a specialist, of course, but what does this mean for the male partner?

Mr. Parnham says: ‘The first thing we must do is a full health check. Studies have shown that men with impaired semen parameters are also more likely to suffer from poor health. We also undertake a semen analysis. If this is abnormal we would repeat the test and if still abnormal then perform blood tests to check hormone levels and whether there might be some genetic abnormality – with appropriate genetic counselling, of course.

‘Some patients will need further tests, including ultrasound imaging of the testes or prostate, MRI scans or vasography. It might all sound rather scary when listed like this, but treatment can be as simple as making some lifestyle changes – stopping smoking, weight loss, improved exercise etc – though on occasion minor surgery may be necessary and in that case we have all the facilities we need at RHG.

‘It’s sad, but there is still a lot of stigma associated with male infertility and very little research in this area, although this seems to be changing. Many men view infertility as a challenge to their masculine identity and so either ignore the issue or find it very difficult to talk about. RHG understands this and has private facilities and counsellors to help.’

Professor Nardo adds: ‘By bringing Vijay and Arie to the clinic, we can offer a unique, bespoke, integrated service where all aspects of male and female infertility are addressed in parallel under one roof, allowing efficient investigation, treatment and excellent outcomes.

‘I believe we should start educating men from a young age about awareness of their reproductive health. By paying no attention until the time they are seeking to conceive, what might initially have been small problems can escalate and cause much heartbreak down the line.’

Professor Sangar agrees: ‘We offer a full male reproductive health check at RHG, whether you are currently actively to trying to conceive, or not. This check-up is, I would argue, something men should consider as a regular thing. It can not only pick up on infertility issues, but also signs of more serious issues.’