Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.
Skip to main content

Anonymous oocyte donation in the EU proceeds only after rigorous screening designed to ensure gamete safety. If anonymous donor gametes originating from outside EU territory are used by EU patients, donor testing must conform to the same standards as if gamete procurement had occurred in the EU. In Ireland, IVF recipients can be matched to anonymous donors in the Ukraine (a non-EU country). This investigation describes the evolution of anonymous oocyte donor screening methods during this period and associated results. Data were reviewed for all participants in an anonymous donor oocyte IVF programme from 2006 to 2009, when testing consistent with contemporary EU screening requirements was performed on all Ukrainian oocyte donors. HIV and hepatitis tests were aggregated from 314 anonymous oocyte donors and 265 recipients. The results included 5,524 Ukrainian women who were interviewed and 314 of these entered the programme (5.7% accession rate). Mean age of anonymous oocyte donors was 27.9 years; all had achieved at least one delivery. No case of hepatitis or HIV was detected at initial screening or at oocyte procurement. This is the first study of HIV and hepatitis incidence specifically among Ukrainian oocyte donors. We find anonymous oocyte donors to be a low-risk group, despite a high background HIV rate. Following full disclosure of the donation process, most Ukrainian women wishing to volunteer as anonymous oocyte donors do not participate. Current EU screening requirements appear adequate to maintain patient safety in the context of anonymous donor oocyte IVF.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of obstetrics and gynaecology : the journal of the Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Publication Date





613 - 616


Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Sims IVF/Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, School of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin, Ireland.


Humans, Fertilization in Vitro, Oocyte Donation, European Union, Tissue Donors, Ukraine, Female