Egg freezing is scientifically known as oocyte cryopreservation, this is a medical procedure that is used to save a woman’s ability to get pregnant in the future. Eggs harvested from a woman’s ovaries are frozen unfertilized and stored for use in the future. After this, the frozen egg can be thawed, combined with sperm in any advanced lab and implanted in your uterus.
When do you need it?
Why do you need egg freezing you ask? Egg freezing is an option for many women who are not ready to step into parenthood when they are at the biological peak of their fertility but might want to be so in the future. Egg freezing doesn’t require sperm because the eggs aren’t fertilized before they’re frozen, but the woman needs to use fertility drugs to make her ovulate so that she can produce multiple eggs for retrieval.
Some situations in which you might consider egg freezing are if:
- You have a health condition that can affect your fertility. These might include sickle cell anaemia, autoimmune diseases such as lupus, and gender diversity, such as being transgender.
- You are about to go through cancer treatment or any other treatment that can affect your fertility. Medical treatments such as radiation or chemotherapy can harm your fertility. Egg freezing before treatment might enable you to have biological children later.
- Some people prefer egg freezing before going through IVF.
- If one wants to freeze her eggs at her most fertile time for having better chances of becoming a parent later.
Like any other assisted fertilization methods or treatment methods, egg freezing to carries some risks which are occur very rarely, including:
- Although rarely, the use of injectable fertility drugs, such as a synthetic follicle-stimulating hormone or luteinizing hormone to induce ovulation, may cause your ovaries to become swollen and painful soon after ovulation or egg retrieval. Some of the symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
- In some rare instances use of an aspirating needle to retrieve eggs may cause bleeding, infection or damage to the bowel, bladder or a blood vessel.
- Egg freezing like any other assisted fertilization process brings the disappointment of a failed procedure.
Mostly any attempted fertilization cycles with the help of frozen eggs is successful. Miscarriages or failed procedures rarely appear, if the age of the woman is above 35.
How you prepare
If you have decided on going through the process of egg freezing, look for a fertility clinic that has reputed reproductive endocrinologists.
Before beginning the egg-freezing process, you’ll likely have some screening blood tests:
- Ovarian reserve testing: To determine the quantity and quality of donor eggs, your doctor might test the concentration of follicle-stimulating hormone and estradiol in your blood. Results can help predict how your ovaries will respond to fertility medication.
- Infectious disease screening: You’ll be screened for certain infectious diseases, such as HIV and hepatitis B and C.
What happens in egg freezing?
Shortly after your unfertilized eggs are harvested, they’re cooled to subzero temperatures to preserve them for future use. It is a lot more difficult to freeze and later fertilize an unfertilized egg than a pre fertilized egg(embryo).
The process most commonly used for egg freezing is called vitrification. The eggs are ruled down rapidly with high concentrations of substances that help prevent ice crystals from forming during the freezing process.
What happens after it?
After the process of egg freezing, you can resume normal activities within a week keeping in mind that one has to avoid unwanted pregnancy.
Contact your health care provider if you have:
- A fever higher than 101.5 F (38.6 C)
- Severe abdominal pain
- Weight gain of more than 2 pounds (0.9 kilograms) in 24 hours
- Heavy vaginal bleeding — filling more than two pads an hour
- Difficulty urinating
To have a better shot at the process of egg freezing, please consult with an established organization like Aaradhya Fertility Center. Aaradhya Fertility Center along with the dedicated involvement of renowned fertility specialist Dr.Saritha has the best environment and staff to take care and guide through anyone who is willing to go through the process of egg freezing or any other assisted fertility treatments.