How Does Egg Freezing Work?

If you are looking for ways to preserve your future ability to become pregnant, especially as you age, egg freezing (cryopreservation of mature oocytes) may be for you.

In the cryopreservation process, your eggs are cooled to sub-zero temperatures to stop all biological activity, making them viable for your use in the future.

Cryopreservation occurs with a process known as “vitrification”. This procedure involves the use of high concentrations of cyroprotectants, providing rapid cooling to achieve the best protection of your eggs. Vitrification allows for the cell to be preserved into a glass-like state without the damaging formation of ice crystals.

Why Freeze My Eggs

You may consider egg freezing if you find yourself in one of these circumstances:

  • Desire to save your eggs for future pregnancy or IVF treatment
  • Experiencing a disease or condition potentially affecting fertility
  • Undergoing treatment for cancer or other condition which may damage your eggs, possibly interfering with future pregnancy
  • Undergoing In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and prefer egg freezing to embryo freezing

Are My Chances Of a Normal Pregnancy the Same as with Fresh Eggs?

Good evidence exists that frozen (vitrified) and thawed eggs, when used in conjunction with IVF/ICSI for young women, have similar pregnancy rates as in fresh, non-frozen ones. Additionally there has been no evidence to date that this vitrification process increases the risks of chromosomal abnormalities, birth defects or developmental deficits for your baby.

The good news is that you now have options!

If you choose to consider this path, your egg freezing is performed in “cycles,” each taking around 2 weeks from the day of ovarian stimulation until egg retrieval.

Inovi egg freezing includes:

  • Fertility Assessment
  • Ovarian Stimulation and Monitoring
  • Egg Retrieval
  • One Year Egg Storage

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What Are Egg Freezing Steps

At Inovi, our reproductive endocrinologists will prescribe fertility medications, stimulating your ovaries, helping you to ovulate and produce multiple eggs for use. This provides an excellent chance for later harvest and fertilization of viable and healthy eggs for your future family.

When your perfect time comes for pregnancy, our specialized and accredited In Vitro Fertilization Lab is here to assist in thawing and fertilizing your eggs from your partner or donor sperm. Once this is accomplished, the fertilized egg (zygote) will be implanted in your uterus. This procedure is known as In Vitro Fertilization (IVF).

 

egg freezing chart

 

Now you can relax and wait until you are ready for the next step toward fertility. This involves thawing of your eggs followed by fertilization with a healthy sperm and implantation in your uterus. If you are not a viable candidate for implantation, you may decide to use a gestational carrier.

At times, we may recommend the use of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). This process involves injecting a healthy sperm directly inside a mature egg which creates embryos which also can be cryopreserved.

What Are My Chances of Pregnancy after Implantation?

Pregnancy rates after implantation is approximately 30-60 percent depending on age. As your age increases, the rates decline. This makes it important for you and your spouse or partner to consider egg freezing as soon as you can.

Dr. Stephan Krotz and his fertility team are here to help you take the first steps in planning your initial visit to learn more about your choices for egg freezing and an exciting new future. We will be glad to discuss costs associated with egg freezing as well as storage. If you need financing assistance we can provide that information for you.

Make certain you compare these statistics accurately across the age and demographic of each clinic patient’s base as many apply these differently when reporting. Both these factors influence the rates and outcomes as reported and found at the Centers for Disease Control and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology.

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