With advancing female age, both the egg number and quality deteriorates. The process of Egg freezing is based on preserving their own eggs in healthy condition until ready to conceive later in life. There are many myths attached to the process of Egg freezing. However at MotherToBe Fertility Centre, the counseling session creates confidence which can help the women to undergo this process easily. We have the expertise and the technology to offer these services to women and till date have offered these services in the context of both oncology and social egg freezing.
Egg freezing for cancer patients prior to starting chemotherapy to preserve fertility.
For women who are about to start chemotherapy which can render a woman menopausal (stoppage of periods with no chance of pregnancy). It is important to offer this fertility preservation option to these women prior to starting chemotherapy so that their fertility is preserved.
- A method to freeze healthy eggs extracted from the ovaries, so that the woman can conceive later in life when she is ready.
- Women may want to delay child bearing due to demanding jobs or because they feel that is not the right time for them to have a baby. It can also appeal to women who have not found the right partner and their biological age is ticking away. Egg freezing helps these women preserve fertility.
- Fertility in the female is at its peak in the twenties and once the female age is 30 years fertility starts declining and drastically declined once one reaches 35 years of age. Two out of three women presenting to us with fertility issues once they are more than 35 years of age have very few eggs. It is just not just the number but quality also declines dramatically with age.
- One is considering to freeze eggs, the earlier would be better-late twenties or early thirties so that the chance of having a baby later with frozen eggs are better. As age increases, as both quality and quantity declines, this can be an issue if a woman presents for freezing after 35 years though it can still be considered.
- It is similar to undergoing IVF in that hormone injections called FSH are given for about 9-10 days and once follicles are of the right size, the eggs are collected under short anaesthetic and frozen.
- We use the latest technique called vitrification for freezing which gives excellent results and they can be frozen for any number of years.
The cost is similar to IVF cycle but in addition involves freezing and storage. Every year storage costs will have to be paid. When the eggs are going to be used they will be thawed and ICSI process done with husband’s sperm and the embryo replaced.
- Using the vitrification technique, which is the latest technique to freeze eggs the results are excellent. The expertise of the embryologist matters most here and if scientist has good expertise as we have at KIMS fertility centre the results of oocytes surviving post thawing are more than 90%.
- Once the woman decides to get pregnant, these eggs are thawed, ICSI with husband’s sperm is carried out and embryo formed in the lab is replaced in the uterus and the results are similar to eggs obtained from fresh IVF cycle.
- To the women –it is a safe procedure and with close monitoring there are no major risks involved with one or two cycles of egg freezing.
- To the baby conceived using frozen eggs-there are more than 5000 babies born worldwide using this technique and studies have shown there are no additional risks of either chromosomal or other abnormalities in these babies. This is a safe procedure.
- As a thumb rule, approximately 10 eggs are needed to achieve a pregnancy. So in general, we would advise undergoing 2 cycles which in most women with a good number of eggs would suffice to collect that number of eggs.
- However, if the woman’s age is advanced or the number of eggs is less they would need to undergo a number of cycles to obtain a good number of eggs.