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Can I do IVF if I am HIV positive?

Understanding the Impact of HIV on Egg Donation

Unfortunately, HIV-positive individuals are not eligible to donate eggs for in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) due to the risks it poses to the surrogate mother and the unborn child. HIV has the potential to negatively impact a woman’s period, which is a crucial factor in egg donation. The egg donation process requires the donor’s menstrual cycle to be precisely regulated, so that the timing for egg retrieval can be optimised, and the best quality eggs can be harvested. The hormonal changes brought on by HIV can interfere with the regulation of periods as HIV can affect the immune system and lead to imbalances in hormone levels.

Perinatal transmission is another concern for using HIV-positive donors. Although the chances of HIV transmission through donated eggs are relatively low, the genetic information and viruses carried by the eggs can pose risks to the unborn child.

The primary goal of IVF treatment is to ensure a safe and secure process for everyone involved, especially the unborn child. Using HIV-positive egg donors can potentially result in the birth of HIV-positive infants, which is an unacceptable outcome. Therefore, egg donor agencies like Gift ov life do not accept HIV-positive egg donors.

It is also essential to consider the future fertility of the donor. Donating eggs does not have any long-term adverse effects on future fertility. However, donors are advised to seek medical advice and consultation before proceeding with the donation process.

If you have any concerns or questions about egg donation, it is always recommended to consult with an egg donation expert. Gift ov life is a well-known and successful egg donation program in South Africa, providing top-quality services and a team of experts to guide donors through the entire process.

Contact Gift ov life for further information or read their egg donor stories to learn more

Why South Africa is a top fertility destination?

South Africa has become a popular destination for those seeking fertility treatments, with cutting-edge clinics and a wide range of available donors making it an ideal option for individuals and couples looking to start or expand their families. But why should someone travel halfway across the world for treatment that they could undergo much closer to home? The answer lies in the combination of affordability, success rates, and access to a large database of donors.

One of the primary reasons why South Africa has become such a sought-after destination for fertility treatments is the country’s favourable exchange rate. Not only is treatment reasonably priced, but it is also highly successful, with South African fertility clinics ranked among the best in the world. Moreover, there is no waiting list for donors, and patients can choose from a large pool of donors who are healthy young female volunteers between the ages of 21 and 34 years old.

What sets South Africa apart from other countries offering fertility treatments is the clear legislation and ethics surrounding egg donation, which ensures the safety and well-being of both the donors and the future parents and their prospective children. Egg donors in South Africa are compensated for their donation, but the amount has been carefully regulated to ensure that donors are motivated by altruistic reasons rather than financial gain. The egg donors are therefore truly doing this as an act of extreme kindness to make a genuine difference in someone else’s life.

South Africa also offers a large database of first-class egg donors from all races and ethnicities, and future parents are able to view full information about prospective donors, including family history, education history, medical information, and photos of the donor as a child. In addition, South Africa’s legislation allows egg donors to remain anonymous, which provides privacy for both the donor and the future parents.

South Africa’s excellent medical care, a wide range of available donors, similar cultures, the same language and time zone, and the opportunity to combine treatment with a fantastic vacation make it an ideal destination for those seeking donor egg IVF, particularly for European fertility patients. In fact, medical tourism, sometimes referred to as “IVF/Egg safaris,” is becoming increasingly popular in South Africa, as more patients and their partners decide to take a dream safari while undergoing their IVF treatment.

In conclusion, South Africa’s reputation as a world-class destination for fertility treatments continues to grow, thanks to its excellent medical care, a wide range of available donors, clear legislation and ethics surrounding egg donation, and favourable exchange rate. For individuals and couples looking to start or expand their families, South Africa is a destination that offers the best of both worlds: top-notch medical care and the opportunity to enjoy a dream vacation at the same time.

The Egg Donor Process

The process of egg donation requires precise timing and coordination. It is crucial to ensure that the donor’s eggs are matured and ready for retrieval when the intended parent’s womb is ready to receive the embryos. This synchronization of two women’s bodies is a delicate process that requires careful preparation to achieve the best results. The timing of the preparation is of utmost importance to ensure the success of the donation process.


After being selected to donate, a Gift ov life support person will be assigned to the donor and will available to her throughout the entire donation process to answer any questions and provide guidance.

Once the donor has been chosen by the intended parent, Gift ov life will send an email to inform the donor of their selection. At this stage, Gift ov life will check that the donor is still willing, ready, and able to donate. It is important to for the donor to check emails and messages regularly and respond promptly, as the intended parents will be anxiously waiting to hear if their chosen donor is willing to donate to them. The support and guidance provided by Gift ov life during this time can help ease any anxieties the donor may have and ensure a smooth donation process.

First Screening

Before proceeding with the donation process, Gift ov life ensures that the donor is medically and mentally fit to donate. The medical assessment will take place at the fertility clinic where the donor has been chosen to donate.

The medical assessment will include a gynaecological check-up, where the doctor will conduct an internal ultrasound to examine the donor’s ovaries. This is to ensure that they are healthy and that the donor has enough eggs to be a suitable egg donor. The doctor will also conduct a general health check-up, a medical questionnaire, and some blood tests to check for infectious diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.

Once the donor has been declared medically fit to donate, a session with a psychologist or social worker (either in person or online) will be scheduled to ensure that the donor is mentally healthy enough to donate. This process provides an opportunity for the donor to discuss any concerns or questions they may have about the egg donation process. The therapist will also take a family mental health history, as hereditary diseases such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia in the donor’s immediate family may disqualify them from becoming an egg donor.

All these tests and appointments are completely free of charge. The donor will not be required to pay for any tests, appointments, or medication. The only expense the donor will incur is getting themselves to the clinic on time.

After you have passed the medical and mental screening, Gift ov life will begin the planning phase for your donation. Timing is crucial, as your menstrual cycle and the intended parent’s cycle need to be synchronized perfectly.

It usually takes 2 to 3 months from the time you are chosen as a donor for the actual donation to take place. During the planning process, it is essential to inform the fertility clinic of any dates when you cannot donate. For example, if you have an upcoming vacation or exams, let the clinic know so that they can avoid scheduling appointments or the egg retrieval on those dates.

Once your treatment plan has been finalized and the dates have been confirmed with you and the intended parent, Gift ov life will provide you with your medication and detailed instructions on how and when to take them. This medication will help grow and mature your eggs for the egg retrieval procedure.

Treatment Plan

Once you and the mom-to-be have synchronized your cycles using the oral contraceptive, it’s time for the egg donation process to move forward. You will now begin taking medication to stimulate your ovaries to produce multiple eggs. The medication used is follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which is administered by injection.

During this phase of the process, you will need to visit the fertility clinic every two to three days for monitoring appointments. These appointments involve transvaginal ultrasounds and blood tests to monitor your body’s response to the medication and ensure that your eggs are developing as they should. The doctor may adjust your medication dosage based on the results of these tests.

While you are taking the medication to stimulate egg growth, the intended parent will also be taking medication to prepare her uterus for implantation of the embryos. This medication is typically administered as a series of injections.

Once the eggs have reached maturity, the final step of the donation process is egg retrieval. The retrieval process is typically done under sedation and involves using a needle to remove the mature eggs from your ovaries. The eggs are then given to the intended parent’s fertility specialist, who will fertilize them with the intended father’s sperm and transfer the resulting embryos to the intended mother’s uterus.

Fertility Medication

After completing the initial screening, you will have to wait for a few weeks before the busy phase of the egg donation process begins. This is when you will start taking fertility medication to prepare your body for egg retrieval. The medication contains a hormone called Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), which naturally occurs in the body to grow and mature the eggs.

The fertility medication is given in the form of injections, and you will need to administer them to yourself for around ten days. Don’t worry; the nurse at the fertility clinic will show you how to inject yourself and where to inject it. The tummy area is usually the easiest and least painful area to inject, and most of us have some padding there.

If you feel uncomfortable injecting yourself, don’t hesitate to ask your partner, friend, or relative to help you with it. They might even enjoy the opportunity to give you a helping hand!


After starting the fertility injections, you will need to attend regular appointments with the doctor at the fertility clinic every second or third day. These appointments are crucial for monitoring your body’s response to the fertility medication, which can vary from person to person. The doctor will check the growth of your eggs and adjust the medication dosage accordingly.

During the 10-day period of fertility medication, you will need to attend between three and four appointments. It is extremely important that you attend each appointment on the exact date and time given to you. Gift ov life will provide you with the appointment schedule well in advance, so you can plan accordingly.

It’s important to keep in mind that these appointments will occur during normal office hours, usually Monday to Friday. If you are working or attending classes, it’s crucial to factor in the appointments when agreeing to donate. However, the check-up appointments are usually fairly quick and should not take more than an hour of your time.

The Egg Retrieval

The egg retrieval process is a safe, minimally invasive procedure that does not require surgery, scarring, or stitches. Once the date of the procedure is confirmed, you will need to take one day off work. The retrieval date will be communicated to you well in advance so you can make arrangements. If you need a doctor’s note for work, the fertility doctor can provide one.

On the day of egg retrieval, you will be given a specific time to arrive at the clinic. You may be asked to refrain from eating or drinking anything beforehand. Upon arrival, a nurse will take you to the retrieval room where you will be given twilight anaesthesia through an IV. This mild sedative will put you into a deep sleep, but you will still be able to breathe on your own.

The doctor will then use a fine needle inserted through the vaginal wall to extract the fluid and eggs from each ovarian follicle. The fluid will be collected in a test tube and given to the embryologist, who will retrieve the eggs from it. The procedure is quick and painless.

After about 30 minutes, you will wake up and be given a small snack and something to drink. You will need someone to accompany you home as you will still be groggy from the sedation. It is important to note that you cannot drive yourself home. An Uber or taxi ride is also an option.