Egg freezing, also known as Cryopreservation or oocyte vitrification is a wonderful option for women who would like to extend their fertility. If you are considering postponing childbearing, this technique can increase your chances of having a healthy, genetically related baby at an older age. You may wish to consider cryopreservation if you:
- Have not yet met the father of your future children.
- Are in a committed relationship, but not ready for children.
- Are focusing on your career goals/education.
- Have had unexpected life changes.
- Are facing a fertility-threatening illness.
- Are simply not ready.
Cryopreservation is the preservation and storage of eggs at a very low temperature until they can be revived and restored to the same living state as before they were stored. These low temperatures are possible using liquid nitrogen which maintains the stored embryos and eggs at -196 degrees Celsius (-320.8 degrees Fahrenheit). Eggs and embryos can be cryopreserved for prolonged periods of time and function normally after they are thawed.
The process of egg freezing often begins with oral hormones to down-regulate the ovaries followed by injections to develop a number of follicles for egg retrieval. The eggs are retrieved in-office and the embryologist prepares the eggs for freezing.
We cryopreserve eggs using the most effective procedure currently available, vitrification. The vitrification process rapidly lowers the temperature of the eggs. The rapid drop in temperature enables the liquid containing the eggs to transition directly to a solid (glasslike) state thus preventing any ice crystal formation–a problem experienced with other methods of freezing that compromises the eggs. The eggs can remain frozen until the woman is ready to begin her family.
Improving Your Odds
If you are considering having a family someday, but are not ready just yet, we invite you to call us at 251-438-4200 to discuss whether cryopreservation may be an option that can help fulfill your dream of family down the road.