How to prepare for your egg retrieval procedure.
You’ve made it! Your body has responded properly to medications and your doctor has organized the date and time for your egg retrieval procedure. We understand that undergoing the retrieval procedure might cause you a bit of anxiety, and it may even feel a little daunting, but we really want you to have a positive experience, and to welcome your egg retrieval day by knowing what to expect. Below you’ll find some important egg retrieval day information.
In advance of arriving to the fertility center on egg retrieval day
⇒ The fertility center nursing team will provide you with instructions regarding limitations to food and beverages leading up to your egg retrieval. Follow these instructions carefully.
⇒ Bring photo identification with you to your egg retrieval.
⇒ Wear loose, comfortable clothes to your egg retrieval.
⇒ Leave jewelry and contact lenses at home, and do not wear make-up, perfume, or scented lotion to your egg retrieval.
⇒ Your nursing team will provide you with detailed instructions regarding arrival time to the fertility center on egg retrieval day.
⇒ You will be required to have an egg retrieval companion with you on your egg retrieval day.
Arrival To The Fertility Center – Egg Retrieval Day
Upon arrival at your fertility center on egg retrieval day, you’ll participate in a series of steps leading up to the egg retrieval procedure itself.
⇒ Upon arrival to the fertility center, you will be asked to sign in at the front desk, then meet with a nurse who will be responsible for your care before and after egg retrieval. You may be required to complete consent forms, if you haven’t already done so.
⇒ You will be asked to empty your bladder and change into a hospital gown to begin preparation for your egg retrieval procedure.
⇒ You will meet with an anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist to discuss your medical history and answer any questions you have. You’ll be administered an IV and the sedation process. Once sufficiently sedated, you will be moved to your retrieval procedure room and the retrieval procedure will begin.
The Egg Retrieval Procedure
The egg retrieval procedure is short in duration, lasting 15-30 minutes, depending on the number of follicles aspirated. During the procedure, mature eggs from your ovarian follicles will be aspirated with the help of a transvaginal ultrasound probe. Through needle aspiration, the eggs and follicular fluid are collected in test tubes and sent to the embryology lab. Once all of the follicles have been aspirated, you will be taken to a recovery room, where you will gradually awaken under nurse observation, and then be provided some crackers and juice before getting dressed and being discharged back to your hotel. Most egg donors rest and recover for 30-45 minutes following egg retrieval and prior to discharge.
Questions To Ask About Egg Retrieval
Will my egg retrieval procedure hurt?
Thanks to IV sedation, you will not be conscious, and as a result, you won’t feel any pain during your egg retrieval procedure. When you awaken, you may experience cramping and pelvic discomfort, as well as possible nausea, all of which are normal immediately following your egg retrieval procedure.
Do I need an adult companion with me on egg retrieval day?
Yes, you will need an adult companion with you on egg retrieval day. Your hopeful couple will cover the cost of a friend or family member to travel with you, or our office can assist with arranging a home health nurse to be with you. The fertility center will not allow you to leave (and sometimes not allow you to undergo your procedure) without an adult companion with you. A Lyft or Uber driver does not constitute an adult companion.
How will I feel in the days following my egg retrieval?
Anesthesia may sometimes cause prolonged nausea and dizziness following egg retrieval, up to several hours after leaving the fertility center. You may also experience pelvic discomfort, and experience spotting, both of which are common following egg retrieval.
When may I return to work or school?
On average, you’ll feel back to your pre-cycle self within 48-72 hours following your egg retrieval procedure. Plan your recovery, accordingly, to give yourself plenty of time to rest and recuperate before going back to work or school.
When may I expect to get my menstrual period?
You can expect your menstrual period to arrive 7-14 days following your egg retrieval procedure, at which time you can resume your own method of birth control.
I’ve heard about ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). What is it, and what symptoms should I be looking for following my egg retrieval procedure?
It’s normal to feel tired and bloated, as well as experience pelvic discomfort and light spotting following your egg retrieval procedure. These are common side effects following egg retrieval and are a normal part of the recovery process. However, if at any point you feel like something just isn’t right, such as you experience vomiting or difficulty breathing, or develop severe swelling or abdominal pain, you should contact your treating physician’s office, day or night, to determine the appropriate follow-up care required to prevent possible ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.
We’ve provided you with general information about your egg retrieval procedure, and questions that are commonly asked following egg retrieval. Please contact us if you have further questions about what happens at egg retrieval.