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Social egg freezing and donation: waste not, want not


The trend towards postponement of childbearing has seen increasing numbers of women turning towards oocyte banking for anticipated gamete exhaustion (AGE banking), which offers a realistic chance of achieving genetically connected offspring. However, there are concerns around the use of this technology, including social/ethical implications, low rate of utilisation and its cost-effectiveness. The same societal trends have also resulted in an increased demand and unmet need for donor oocytes, with many women choosing to travel overseas for treatment. This has its own inherent social, medical, financial and psychological sequelae. We propose a possible pathway to address these dual realities. The donation of oocytes originally stored in the context of AGE banking, with appropriate compensatory mechanisms, would ameliorate AGE banking concerns, while simultaneously improving the supply of donor oocytes. This proposed arrangement will result in tangible benefits for prospective donors, recipients and society at large.

  • in vitro fertilisation and embryo transfer
  • donation/procurement of organs/tissues
  • allocation of health care resources
  • cryobanking of sperm, ova or embryos

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All data relevant to the study are included in the article.

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