I am just starting my journey with this process and I am a total newbie. I have gone thru 3 failed IVF attempts with my own eggs. I'm 45, but I'm not ready to stop trying to be a mom. I have a consultation meeting tomorrow on egg donation and I'm creating lists of questions. Anything recommendations on what I should be asking? Any success stories from woman my age?
Who are you consulting with? An RE? An egg donor agency? The kinds of questions you ask each are different and having embarked on three different DE IVF cycles (two cancelled due to issues with donors) and having run my own in person support group for women doing DE IVF I can give you tons of questions to ask but don't want to overwhelm you.
Another great resource for info and online support is PVED (parents via egg donation) run by Marna Gatlin. You have to register, answer some basic questions, and fill out a form and abide by her posting rules. (She is strict but fair and has created a WONDERFUL RESOURCE.)
I started with an RE,Tina Koopersmith (who was awful), then moved to Sam Najmabadi in Beverly Hills, then moved to Dr. Richard Marrs at CFP in Santa Monica, CA and finally on to FSAC in Thousand Oaks, CA (We used Dr. Buyalos there though I had bad experiences with his partner, Dr. Kumar, for reasons I won't go into here.) So I have ample experience on things to look for in an RE as well as an agency, a psychologist to screen donors and a geneticist (all important!) FSAC had their own (small) in house donor pool and a staff member dedicated to overseeing the donor cycles which was an added incentive since DE IVF is very different from regular IVF and needs special sensitivity and focus. Arlene Rhys, the donor coordinator at FSAC has got to be the hardest working woman ever and is super sweet.
I was also able to negotiate a "free rematch policy til live birth" agreement with the Genesis agency (and put it in the contract) and was so glad I did as the fees alone would have run into $15,000. They have since changed this policy, unfortunately and I found that few other agencies are that flexible and generous.
Be forewarned that there are many dicey agencies out there with old profiles on their websites with inaccurate info and that any agency that wants a lot of money from you up front is to be avoided at all costs.
Feel free to email me privately for more info/answers to specific questions at: email@example.com
PS the immunological issues are important as well. I would consult a reputable RI (reproductive immunologist) to make sure you can carry a baby safely. I had two issues: APA (antiphosholipid antibodies) and elevated NK (natural killer cell) count & so injected a blood thinner, lovenox, for the duration of my pg and took prednizone in the first trimester to treat the NK but had to go off of the blood thinner one week before my scheduled c-section. Two days later HELLP syndrome hit, giving me a stroke and putting me in a several week long coma from which the experts were not sure I'd emerge.. I am glad I did not know what I was getting into when I chose to carry my daughter as being pregnant was the happiest time of my life and the prenatal bond was amazing. But honestly I would not wish HELLP and stroke/coma/neuro rehab treatment ON MY WORST ENEMY. So please do yourself a favor and get fully checked out ahead of time!
It was only a few months ago (January) when I posted my introduction message here. I remember when I posted that it was a relief that I found I was able to do so, almost as though that was proof that I had accepted the move to DE. The ladies here have been so welcoming, warm and friendly and knowledgeable. I am sure you will find this too as you post more and more.
I am going to Czech Republic for my first DE cycle next month. The process is very different to how it is in US, this is because in CR donors are anonymous and only basic information is made available, so I guess I wouldn't be much help with suggesting questions for your meeting. But in the meantime I wanted to say Hi and to wish you success here.