Since 1986, 46-year-old Monica Ward and her husband, Neil, had endured 15 failed attempts with various assisted reproductive techniques since their first tries at conception, according to an ABC News report.
After deciding to use donor eggs and sperm, Monica signed up last spring for one more $20,000 round of in-vitro fertilization (IVF)—the couple had made one previous try using donor sperm and eggs. This time IVF worked and nine months later the couple became the ecstatic parents of sons, Walker and Benjamin.
"When I held them for the first time my eyes just filled up with tears," said Monica."[I] am still pinching myself that after so long trying it finally happened."
The Wards' case may seem extreme, but according Dr. Richard Paulson, chief of the division of reproductive endocrinology at the University of Southern California, "what this story shows is that even if you've had lots of failed attempts at more conventional fertility treatments, an older patient can still use donor egg and conceive successfully—sometimes you're just going to need that high-tech treatment."
In the US, due to the high cost of IVF, women are often advised to consider using donor eggs after several failed rounds of IVF. According to fertility experts, barring any underlying uterine problems, the odds of successful conception using donor eggs is much higher than conventional IVF.