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If you’re thinking of having children later, just want to preserve your options, or have an unfortunate diagnosis recently requiring you to start chemotherapy, egg freezing is an easy and straightforward procedure that only takes about 10 to 12 days from start to finish.
The eggs in your ovaries must grow and mature before they can be removed. As such, you’ll receive easy injections of medications that promote egg growth and maturation. Your ovaries will be monitored during this time using ultrasound and blood tests.
Once the tests show your eggs are mature, they’re gently removed from your ovaries and quickly frozen for whenever you want to use them in the future.
What is the best age to freeze my eggs?
Ideally, as soon as possible for the best chance of achieving a healthy pregnancy down the road. This is because, as women age, the number of eggs they have gets fewer and fewer. Eggs also age just like our bodies do, so even if you have the same number as you did five years prior, their “quality” declines.
Will I go into menopause sooner if I freeze my eggs?
No, we will only be growing eggs that would have otherwise died off that month.
Is there a risk of cancer?
According to evidence now, there is no increased risk of cancer.
This is a common reason many people pursue IVF. You may not require it currently, but if you want to postpone childbearing, it’s a way to maintain your current fertility potential.
Creating and then freezing embryos at a young age (when you have more genetically “normal” eggs) has several advantages over individually freezing eggs and sperm. The first is that the embryos survive the freezing process better than eggs. You will also know how many embryos you have rather than wondering how many eggs will fertilize normally and develop into embryos. And finally, with embryos you have the option to do genetic testing to determine how many are chromosomally normal as well as their gender (if you want to be informed).
The eggs in your ovaries must grow and mature before they can be removed. As such, you’ll receive easy injections of medications for about nine days that promote egg growth. Your ovaries will be monitored during this time using ultrasound and blood tests.
Once the tests show your eggs are mature, they’re gently removed from your ovaries. On this same day, we will use your partner’s (or donor’s) sperm to fertilize each egg. These fertilized eggs are then grown for five days until they become a very early “embryo” and are then frozen for future use. At this time, you would also have the option to genetically test the embryo’s cells which normally become the placenta, allowing for safe genetic evaluation without affecting the embryo itself.
How long can the embryos stay frozen for?
Current evidence shows the embryos can stay frozen for more than 20 years while retaining the potential to lead to a live birth.
What happens if I don’t use my embryos?
We will store your embryos in a safe and secure area for as long as you want us to. If you ever decide you don’t want them anymore, you have full control over their disposal.
Does freezing the embryos harm them?
In the hands of a skilled fertility lab, current freezing technology has allowed incredible success, with over 98% of embryos surviving the freezing process. In fact, a majority of centers in the US now freeze embryos for at least a month in individuals wanting to get pregnant at the time of treatment, as it can lead to improved outcomes.
Sperm freezing is helpful for many reasons; for example, if you have a low sperm count and want to store multiple sperm samples prior to IVF to ensure there is enough sperm. It also preserves sperm prior to a sex change operation or in the case of a medical diagnosis requiring chemotherapy.
Most the time, the process is very simple and entails a quick blood test to check for any infectious diseases followed by having you produce a sample in our private collection room. We then wash the sample and freeze only the best quality sperm in many vials for your future use.