Dallas IVF often hears from patients who want children someday, but not right now. For many of these women, our Dallas fertility center recommends egg freezing. Egg freezing allows a woman to freeze her eggs for months—or even years—before thawing for pregnancy. This IVF lab technique can allow a woman to extend her childbearing years.
Egg freezing is a cutting-edge, multi-step clinical and laboratory technique
Until recently, only sperm and embryos could be effectively frozen. Since eggs contain more water than either sperm or embryos, ice crystals would form when using traditional freezing techniques. These ice crystals made eggs more fragile and prone to fracture during thawing. However, a new technique known as vitrification, or rapid freezing, solved this problem.
Our Dallas fertility clinic provides a basic overview of the fertility preservation process.
- Ovarian stimulation is the first step, and it involves taking fertility medications to stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. The goal of egg freezing is to freeze as many eggs as possible.
- The next step is egg retrieval. We will schedule an in-office procedure to collect the eggs and prepare them for cryopreservation.
- Vitrification, or rapid freezing, is performed in our IVF lab. Once your eggs are frozen, they can remain frozen for months or even years.
- When you are ready to use your eggs, they will be shipped from the long-term storage facility and thawed in our IVF lab. At this stage, we combine eggs with your partner’s sperm to allow for fertilization.
- Resulting embryos will be transferred into your uterus, and your physician will then monitor you for pregnancy.
Fertility preservation can be beneficial for many women; however, not everyone is a candidate
If you’re in your 20s or early 30s, have normal FSH values and respond well to fertility medications, then you may be a good candidate for egg freezing. At our Dallas fertility center, our fertility preservation patients generally fall into one of three categories.
- Women in their late 20s, 30s, or early 40s who want to delay getting pregnant. Many women know that they want to wait to have children until they accomplish their professional and personal goals. Egg freezing can make this possible.
- Women who have been diagnosed with cancer. Chemotherapy and radiation treatments can cause fertility problems, so fertility preservation can be an excellent way to preserve fertility.
- Women with a family history of premature menopause or who may experience diminished ovarian function for another reason. Egg freezing can allow women in this group to be proactive about their fertility.
Wondering if you could be a candidate for egg freezing? Contact Dallas IVF to schedule an appointment.