Several factors affect a woman's ability to donate eggs. Although different egg donation programs set different qualifying criteria, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) list some common qualities that women who donate will require.
Women of a younger age are preferable. Generally, donors are between 21 and 34 years of age. Women in this age group tend to respond better to fertility drugs, and they tend to have a higher quality and quantity of eggs.
These factors increase the likelihood of pregnancy and reduce the risk of birth defects.
Donors should be free of infections, such as HIV and hepatitis C, they should not be carriers of the cystic fibrosis gene, and they should not be at risk of inherited disease.
Women may not be eligible to donate if they are at increased risk of exposure to HIV or other infections, for example, through drug use or prostitution. Equally, they may not be able to donate if they cannot produce a detailed family medical history.
Some programs favor women who have already successfully donated eggs, or who have given birth.