It is possible to start a family when the time is right for you! Elective egg freezing, also known as oocyte cryopreservation, has become an increasingly safe and effective method for preserving fertility in women. It may sound like something out of a futuristic movie, but human egg freezing technologies have advanced greatly and provide women and couples with more fertility options and higher success rates than in the past. This treatment is perfect for women who want to maintain their ability to become pregnant at a later time that suits their needs. Here’s what you need to know about elective egg freezing to preserve fertility:
You do not create more eggs throughout your lifetime; women are born with the total amount of eggs you will ever have. To fertility doctors, this is known as the ovarian reserve. Female fertility is known to decline slowly until the age of 30. After the age of 30, female fertility begins to more rapidly decline. By age 40, the chances of spontaneous pregnancy are less than 50% of what they were at age 30, and other risks such as miscarriage and chromosomal abnormalities are significantly higher.
The catch? The only part of the female reproductive system that ages are the eggs. The uterus does not age in the same way. Therefore, retrieving eggs at a younger age and freezing them for later fertilization and implantation allows women to achieve fertility at a later age. Due to the natural egg aging process, it is more ideal to freeze eggs in women who are younger than 38 years old.
There are a variety of reasons women choose egg freezing with the reproductive fertility experts at AZARH, including:
- The desire or necessity to delay pregnancy for monetary, educational or relationship reasons
- To preserve fertility options prior to undergoing cancer therapy or for another medical reason
The process for elective egg freezing at AZARH is similar to the beginning steps used with patients undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF). Birth control is administered to suppress the natural monthly egg development cycle. Egg growth is stimulated by hormone injections. Once eggs reach the desired size and maturity, the body is triggered to ovulate and the egg retrieval procedure is completed in the clinic. Intravenous sedation is administered immediately before the egg retrieval procedure and the fertility specialist quickly completes the procedure. After retrieval, the eggs are examined and the healthy mature eggs are prepared and frozen. The egg retrieval process is quick and painless.
If you are interested in learning more about elective egg freezing, a consultation with one of our local fertility experts is recommended to fully understand the process and ask questions specific to your lifestyle and fertility goals. If you believe elective egg freezing in Arizona is a good option for you, we encourage you to request an appointment at AZARH. Our fertility specialists can help you achieve the family of your dreams on your timeline.