Freezing Your Own Eggs – Are You a Good Candidate?
Young women now can preserve their fertility by storing their healthy unfertilized eggs or oocytes until a time in the future when they are ready to begin their family without feeling the pressures of the “biologic clock”. Women may choose to freeze unfertilized eggs in the following cases:
- To electively preserve young oocytes for future pregnancy
- For medical reasons before initiating potentially gonado-toxic treatment in young cancer patients
- For intended parents wishing to avoid freezing surplus embryos after IVF
Elective Egg Freezing to Preserve Fertility
The vitality of human eggs is at its peak during the active years of a woman’s reproductive life (age 15-35 years) making it more likely that a spontaneous pregnancy can occur. However, for a variety of reasons, these years may not coincide with the time frame when a woman chooses to become pregnant. The physical properties that make an egg fertile during youth, can now be preserved by freezing a woman’s eggs until such a time when she is ready to initiate her family on terms that are suitable for her.
Egg Freezing Promotional Offer for Spring 2013: Freeze Your Eggs with a Friend or Sister -Pay for one egg freezing procedure and get the second at 1/2 off regular pricing View details
The following video demonstrates the method of egg freezing developed by David G. Diaz, MD. (See Video)
After more than a decade of research, our center has perfected the science and the art of successfully freezing human eggs for the purpose of preserving them for future attempts at pregnancy. We have successfully achieved pregnancy after egg freezing in patients who are less than 37 years old at the time of freezing when their eggs are most likely to be healthy and robust. Women older than 37 years may still freeze their eggs but pregnancy rates will lower due to the decline in egg quality that occurs in aging. View our complete report of egg freezing success rates.
Medical Indications for Egg Freezing
Certain medical conditions make it likely that a woman may need to undergo treatments, which may have a toxic effect on her egg quality and therefore reduce the likelihood of pregnancy. In these instances, egg harvesting and freezing may be helpful in the following:
- Young women diagnosed with cancer who wish to store their eggs before beginning potentially toxic chemotherapy or radiation therapy (See Fertile Hope for financial assistance)
- Women diagnosed with serious medical conditions such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis whose eggs may be damaged by medical treatments.
- Women with a family history of early menopause or endometriosis
THE ETHICAL DILEMMA OF FREEZING EMBRYOS
Freezing Eggs Instead of Embryos after IVF
When IVF is performed to treat infertility, left over unused fertilized eggs called embryos are usually frozen. It is estimated that nationally, there are 500,000 abandoned surplus embryos from patients who have completed IVF treatment. If the patient’s first IVF transfer results in a successful birth, patients who have completed their family often struggle with the decision of how to dispose of their unused embryos. This problem can best be addressed by inseminating only a limited number of harvested eggs and freezing the remaining unfertilized eggs. Then, if it becomes necessary for another IVF attempt, a limited number of frozen eggs can be thawed yielding just enough embryos to transfer. This will help minimize the parents’ feelings of guilt or remorse about the status of unused embryos.