By Greg Bowman

BIRMINGHAM (WWJ) – Couples who have struggled for years to have a baby are banking on something new to get pregnant.

The Michigan Egg Bank allows women to conceive using frozen eggs from anonymous donors. And those facing health crises like cancer can freeze their own eggs and allow them to be thawed at a later date after they complete chemotherapy, radiation or other treatments that might damage or destroy the eggs.

Bill Vanderworp and his wife Julie of Commerce Township tried for 13 years to get pregnant before finally having their son Kent using an anonymous egg donor.

“It’s taken 13 years to get here and a lot of emotion, but here we are, and our little guy is our world now,” said Vanderworp.

Dr. Michael Mersol-Barg of the Center For Reproductive Medicine And Surgery in Birmingham says they are the only center in Michigan and one of only a handful in the country that have had success in using frozen eggs.

“You’ve heard of sperm banks, for the past 50 years using sperm, but the technology to freeze eggs is just emerging in the past four or five years. And it’s a major game changer for women having more control of their reproductive choices. Probably the biggest game changer since the Birth Control Pill,” said Dr. Michael Mersol-Barg.

The center had its first baby born using a frozen egg in 2010. “Now we’ve had two dozen babies born. There are seven babies on the way, and unfortunately, one couple suffered a miscarriage,” said Dr. Mersol-Barg.

Why would someone want to be an egg donor?

One of the anonymous donors told WWJ’s Greg Bowman, “I actually have close family and friends who had trouble having a baby. They actually tried in vitro six times. So, that’s what brought me closer to doing this. It’s an amazing experience knowing how much I’ve helped other couples trying to have a family.”

Julie Vanderworp could not be happier with the results. “He’s our little miracle. He’s truly our miracle child.”

For more information on the center or becoming an egg donor, visit this link.

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