Embryo Donation “Embryo Adoption” What is it?

Is embryo donation the right choice for you? Do you know you can get pregnant and build your family using embryos from another family?


You can through the miracle of EMBRYO DONATION…



Embryo Donation: During the process of In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), more embryos may be created than will be used. Once the individuals involved have determined that they will not use the additional embryos themselves, they have as one of their options to donate their unused embryos to another family. That is called embryo donation which sometimes is called embryo adoption.



What is Embryo Donation? How does it differ from Embryo Adoption?

Embryo Donation and Embryo Adoption are similar concepts, and sometimes the terms are used interchangeably. Both refer to the giving and receiving of fertilized eggs (embryos) that are created during an In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) cycle.

During the process of IVF more embryos may be created than will be used. It is estimated that over 625,000 frozen embryos are stored in the United States. Many for future use by the biological parents. But once the individuals involved have determined that they will not use the additional embryos themselves, they are faced with the challenge of what to do with them. Their options, depending on their state of residence and the policies of the clinic used, are to:

  • Continue to maintain them in storage indefinitely
  • Thaw and don’t use (or transfer in a way that is unlikely or impossible to result in pregnancy)
  • Donate them to scientific research
  • Donate them to someone else who wants to conceive (embryo donation)

Embryo donation can provide the opportunity to assist others who want to conceive by donating available embryos and giving someone else the chance to start or add to their own family.

Frequently, organizations using the term “embryo adoption” treat the donation as a traditional adoption, and may require home studies, lengthy application processes, and costly up-front fees. From a legal perspective, the terminology “adoption” implies that a child has already been born and is being placed into a family. In the case of embryo donation, the child will be born into the family, with the recipient couple being named on the birth certificate as parents. Like the donation of sperm or unfertilized eggs, embryo donation is a way of helping someone else conceive. In most states, embryo donation is legally handled as a transfer of private property, and medically handled as a donation of cells or tissue. A poll conducted by Harris Interactive indicates that, “respondents overwhelming think the term ’embryo donation,’ as opposed to ’embryo adoption,’ best describes this process.” (Embryo Donation Research: Select Findings, August 21, 2003)

We feel that EMBRYO DONATION more accurately describes the process of giving and receiving embryos, and chooses to use this terminology.


MiraclesWaiting.org - Embryo Donation ProgramMiraclesWaiting.org – Embryo Donation Program