Adopt/Donate An Embryo- Create A Family
As science and technology advance and particularly in the areas of assisted reproductive technologies, should people discard their embryos, place them in cryopreserved freeze, or have them donated to science for stem cell research.
An embryo is the earliest stage in human development after sperm fertilizes an egg cell, a zygote is formed, which possesses half of the DNA from each parent.
In-Vitro Fertilization is used to assist couples who cannot get pregnant without the assistance of artificial insemination. For years, couples would spend large sums of money on in-vitro fertilization, by trying and repeating this process, until they were successful or failed or ran out of funds to do so.
As technology has advanced, In-Vitro Fertilization has become more and more efficient.
Today, In-Vitro Fertilization can form multiple embryos and it is up to the choice of the parents what should become of the additional embryos that they cannot use at this time.
Many families will decide to place their additional embryos in cryopreserved freeze to later be thawed in the event they want to have additional embryos implanted to have more children.
In the event four or five additional embryos are formed, it is unlikely that the parents will have a need or use for these additional embryos.
There are a limited number of choices as to what to do with these additional embryos. The first choice is to dispose or discard the embryos. These will be destroyed and no one but the parents will know of this choice.
This is an extremely difficult decision, because some people believe that Life begins at conception and that destroying these embryos is to some extent ending a potential life.
The second alternative is stem cell research. This is an admirable option for people who do not believe that embryos are people or could be people and the stem cells can be used in attempts to cure disease.
Stem cell research is not limited to the stem cells of embryos. In fact, adult stem cells are used to perform the same functions without the necessity of destroying embryos.
Finally, the last choice, and I believe the best choice, is to have the additional embryos placed in cryopreserved freeze. This allows for the embryos to be thawed and used to increase the parents’ family or they can be donated to another family in an open or closed donation.
An open donation would involve the parties exchanging information as to their backgrounds, ethnicity, religions etc. The amount of information would be discussed and negotiated as part of an embryo donor contract.
In a closed embryo donation, the identities of the parties will be kept confidential or anonymous. Basic information can still be exchanged for purposes of reaching an appropriate match.
Embryo Donation is the most positive outcome for the cryopreserved embryos, because the family that tried so hard to have a family is giving the gift of like to another family. This is a blessing and morally the right thing to do with the embryos who could potentially turn into wonderful people.