Poor Egg Quality - Should I go immediately to donor?
4 Replies
Bella123 - February 4

Hi, I recently found out after my second IVF/ICSI cycle that my eggs were described by the embryologist as fragile, grainy and have fragmented polar bodies. I am only 33 yeard old and can produce an adequate number of eggs during stimulation (1st IVF - 22 eggs, 17 embryos (most were 6-8 cells, no grade 1, but 60% grade 2 and 40% grade 3)); 2nd IVF - 17 eggs, 13 embryos (as of day 4, only 1 grade 1 morula compacting, 40% grade 2 and the rest grade 3). We also did PGD with the 2nd IVF and discovered that only 2 were normal as of day 4 (the grade 1 morula and a 8 cell compacting grade 3) and the rest had multiple chromosomal abnormalities (including blastocysts and several compacting embryos). The 1st IVF resulted in nothing, and the 2nd IVF resulted in a chemical pregnancy (5 weeks). I also have immune problems which could have caused the chemical (my husband and I share the same dq alpha w/c has elevated my NK cells). Because of this, I have decided to use a gestational surrogate for the next IVF cycle to eliminate that issue. My RE told me though that the best chance to get pregnant soon would be to use a Donor Egg, but although we are open to that, we feel like we want to try some more with my eggs. I have also started acupuncture in the hopes of improving egg quality (blind faith). Pls. let me know if you think we are just spinning our wheels and should just go straight to donor eggs. Is there anything that can be done to help with my egg quality? Thanks.


Dr Smith - February 6

The scientific answer is yes, proceed to using donated eggs. I realize that, at 33, you were not expecting to have to make that choice, but its pretty clear from your two failed IVF cycles that the majority of your eggs are chromosomally abnormal. I know this is not what you want to hear, but I agree with your doc.

No, there's nothing that can be done to improve your egg quality. The major problem is that the eggs are chomosomally abnormal and there is currently no technology available to correct that problem.


Bella123 - February 6

Thanks for very your very honest response. You state that it is a scientific response. So could I basically gamble and play the odds. As you state, the latest pgd results showed that only 15% were normal (as opposed to 40%, accdg to my RE). But that is still 15%. Money is not a factor for me, so if I try to roll the dice again and again, I am hoping that I will find one good egg. The first IVF, I produced 22 eggs, 17 embryos, and the second IVF, I produced 17 eggs, 13 embryos. So there must be some good egg...Or are you still saying that 15% is too bad to even try. Thx.


Dr Smith - February 7

If there are no financial considers, then the other consideration is emotional. Are you prepared to get [i]the bad news[/i] again, because it is likely that's what going to happen. It seems to me that you are not yet emotionally ready to accept the use of donated eggs. If you think you can handle the emotional aspects of another cycle, then perhaps you should try one more time with your own eggs. I would recommend PGD in your case, because of the high number of aneuploid embryos and that some of the aneuploid embryos are capable of reaching the blastocyst stage. Best of luck.


morsecooper - December 12

Hi - Did you have any luck with the acupuncture - I am thinking of trying.



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