March 27, 2012

Nuts and Bolts of Planning DE IVF Abroad

I thought I would share my research about going outside of the US for DE IVF.  I only researched Spain and the Czech Republic before making my decision. I did casually look into Greece but the current state of that country's economy made me a little skittish.

My spreadsheet reflects information I received via email and the prices were quoted to me in the last week or so.  Both countries only offer anonymous donor eggs and sperm.  The clinics will pick a donor for you based upon your height, weight and general appearance.  All agencies will accommodate blood type preferences but in the CR this would delay the process as most of the population has a positive blood type (I was considering a negative donor as I am Rh-).

Spain readily works with single women and in fact by Spanish law, all women have the right to access assisted reproduction techniques, irrespective of whether or not they have a partner.

The laws of CR do not allow for clinics to work with single women.  There are ways to work around this law and many (but not all) clinics have a "don't ask, don't tell" approach.  

The clinics all report using donors from nearby universities and in both countries women are not paid for their donation save for a small stipend.  The CR clinics also reported recruiting women on maternity leave as leave there can be up for four years long. 

I did a lot of searching through online forums, most of them UK or AUS based to learn what others thought about the clinics themselves.  From those impressions I chose the four clinics below to research.  All are reportedly highly reputable, technologically advanced and up to American clinical standards of RE medicine.

I also found that there are "concierge service" companies who will shepherd one through this process, helping to choose the right clinic, coordinate dates, make travel arrangements and generally hold your hand through the process, which from such a distance away can appear quite daunting.  There are a few different levels of these service organizations and I'll report on those in another post.

I have other notes to share as well.  It seems the deeper I go, the more interesting things I uncover.

In the meantime, I hope the info below can help someone else!

Currency converter here


  1. I really did think about it, but actually for my having never the country going international for IVF seemed overwhelming. I've not heard much about Spain's programs but heard a lot about the CR and several others. Good luck with your choices!

  2. Very interesting information. Thank you for sharing. This may be an alternative some might not of considered.

  3. Interesting. One thing you may or may not know--but I would want to in your shoes--is how many embryos are transferred to get that success rate, and if that rate is based on pregnancy or live birth. Sounds very promising!

    1. That is important to know and I should have included that info. The stats I was given reflect live births and two embryos transferred from donor eggs. The stats do not break it down further into fresh sperm vs. frozen sperm. Patients using their own eggs have a much different statistical outcome of course. All in all, the success rate for DE IVF is on par with clinics in my area. The cost however, is the deciding factor for me.

  4. Thanks so much for sharing your information. I think I'd be inclined to go with the Czech Republic as well.

  5. That is great information. I know someone doing IVF during her vacation in Barbados. I guess she did some research as well through her USA RE and found that they had some good stats. Just something to look into perhaps.

  6. Interesting. We have pretty much decided on Spain, and I just wanted to comment that the clinics that you looked at are definitely on the high end of the price spectrum. Some are closer to 7000 Euros, so still more than CR, but much better than e.g., Institut Marques.

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