STAGE 6 Egg collection

Around 34–40 hours after your Trigger Shot, and just before ovulation, your eggs are collected. A needle, attached to an ultrasound probe, is inserted through the vagina. Eggs are taken from follicles of each ovary and placed into separate test tubes. You’ll have a mild sedative or anaesthetic for this and the whole thing takes no more than twenty minutes.

The next day you will start taking progesterone. This prepares the lining of the uterus to allow a fertilised egg (embryo) to stick. If a pregnancy does not happen this time, you will have your period. This is always tough, but don’t give up. Your doctor will talk everything through with you.

If an embryo implants successfully into the lining of the uterus, the ovary will produce progesterone for eight weeks on its own. Some patients will need progesterone supplements for up to twelve weeks. After this time progesterone will be produced naturally by the placenta throughout the rest of the pregnancy.

Sperm collection
Your partner’s sperm is usually collected on the same day or just before your eggs are collected. Your clinic will let you know what to do and when. This will need to be collected at the clinic. This can often be difficult as there’s so much pressure and not a lot of romance! One answer may be to freeze some sperm in advance which can then be thawed on the day of fertilisation. Again, all of this will be explained in detail nearer the time.

You may feel a bit bloated and constipated and all the medication can make you feel nauseous following egg collection. This should ease off after a day. It’s also not unusual to experience some stomach or pelvic pain. When you do, you can ease with a hot water bottle or painkillers. Check with your doctor or pharmacist which painkillers are best for you. If the pain is severe or continuous speak to your doctor as soon as possible. There may also be some light bleeding for a few days following egg collection, so wear panty liners. This should be dark red or brown. If it’s bright red or you are bleeding profusely, you must contact your doctor straight away.

Take things really easy for the first 24 hours after surgery, and no heavy work! Get your partner or close friend to stay with you.

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