Reciprocal IVF allows two women to share the baby-making journey. One woman will carry an embryo developed from their partner’s egg and using donor sperm.

The partner donating the egg will undergo a round of IVF, then the embryo is removed, fertilised and placed into the partner.

Why choose this path?

It could be to share the experience (popular with lesbian couples) or one partner has a medical condition that they do not want to pass on or they cannot carry the pregnancy.

How reciprocal IVF works

  • The process is very similar to conventional IVF
  • After choosing a sperm donor, the two women synchronise their menstrual cycles with contraceptive pills
  • The egg donor takes medication to stimulate multiple eggs and speed up growth
  • The partner who is to have the embryo implanted takes medications to help prepare the uterus
  • After 6 to 9 weeks the eggs are retrieved and fertilised in the laboratory
  • Embryos are then placed in the uterus and the two-week wait commences to see if pregnancy is successful
  • Check out http://www.stonewall.org.uk for advice

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