While many women tend to postpone having children due to time-consuming jobs and lifestyle limitations, some find it is too late to conceive by the time they are financially and emotionally prepared for parenthood. Women are born with a finite number of eggs—a quantity which steadily decreases over time. However, recent advances in medicine, like egg freezing, now allow women the opportunity to delay pregnancy until a more opportune time.
What is Egg Freezing?
Also known as vitrification or oocyte cryopreservation, egg freezing is an outpatient procedure that allows for a woman’s eggs to be frozen at a fast rate. This innovative procedure eliminates the formation of ice crystals in the oocyte that could ultimately shatter the structure of the egg. Once the egg has been frozen, the oocyte is stored in liquid nitrogen until it is ready to be thawed and fertilized.
Who is an Ideal Candidate?
Women who are less than 40 years of age with normal FSH hormone levels and who do not currently want to get pregnant, but wish to have a family at a later time, and who are available for appointments and not traveling for approximately 2 weeks are generally good candidates.
How Does Egg Freezing Work?
The egg freezing process may be done using several methods, including:
- Surgically removing an ovary or piece of an ovary and freezing it for later replantation or in vitro maturation
- Harvesting immature eggs and maturing them at a later date
- Maturing eggs through a typical IVF treatment cycle and subsequently freezing the egg after retrieval; the eggs can be frozen in the same way that embryos are frozen
Are you interested in more information on vitrification? The experienced fertility doctors with Fertility Centers of Illinois will help you identify which fertility treatment option best suits your needs. Schedule a consultation online or by calling (877) 499-8730 today.