Vitrify your eggs: You can now decide when you want to become a mother
Increasingly, women are postponing their motherhood, whether for personal or professional reasons. The ideal biological age to get pregnant is from 20 to 30 years, but the current trend is that women are having their first child later. If you are a woman in your most fertile age, you can cryopreserve your oocytes to use them in the future.
Why is it a good idea to freeze your eggs?
As time goes by a womans fertility decreases considerably due to the aging of the ovaries, therefore not only does it become increasingly difficult for a woman to conceive but furthermore her chances of having a healthy baby are also reduced.
This is because a woman is born with a certain egg resource which reduces progressively in each menstrual cycle approx 1,000 eggs are lost and when a woman turns 35 there is approx only 10% of her resource left). Also, the quality of the eggs deteriorate and it is not uncommon that a woman aged between 38 and 40 has already used up all her egg resources which may have enabled her to have a healthy baby. This is because a womans age affects the egg creation process and thus results in failed reproductive attempts or in chromosomal abnormalities for example Downs Syndrome.
Freezing a womans eggs at her most fertile period can thus avoid these problems and will allow her to have good quality eggs for a possible reproductive treatment, which will provide a greater chance of having a successful pregnancy and health baby.
In which situations is egg freezing suggested
• To preserve fertility. For young single women who want to assure their future fertility, whether alone or with that special person they have not found yet, but they hope to find one day. Also for young women with a partner who wish to delay motherhood due to personal or professional reasons.
• Before undoing oncological treatment. Chemotherapy and radiology result in irreversible damage to the eggs. Therefore a womans fertility can be preserved by freezing her eggs before such treatment.
• For Other Medical Reasons (For example before the removal of a ovary).
• Ethical and Moral reasons. In IVF cycles when the freezing of embryos is against a persons desire.
• To Increase the pregnancy rates in women with a low ovarian reserve.By fertilizing the eggs after several cycles of stimulation.
How is egg freezing performed
Firstly it is necessary to obtain the eggs through ovarian stimulation and egg retrieval.
Once the eggs have been retrieved, the vitrification procedure takes place. Vitrification is performed by hardening the eggs quickly at low temperatures thus to avoid the formation of ice. To achieve this, a large quantity of cellular cryoprotectors are used to avoid breakages in the cellular membranes.
Some time later, when a pregnancy is desired, the eggs are defrosted and fertilised. The transfer of the embryos then takes place 2 or 3 days later, without the need for hormone treatment.
Physician of the Year in Assisted Reproduction 2019
Dr. Marisa López-Teijón’s opinion
“Oocyte vitrification is an incredible advancement when carried out properly –i.e. when performed at the right time while the oocyte quality is good and carried out by professionals in an experienced laboratory. The aim is to vitrify oocytes that will allow us to delay motherhood without having to turn to donor eggs. It is important to clarify that it is a possibility and not a security, as there are many other factors taking place –the quality of the sperm that will be use for fertilization, implantation capacity of the embryos, etc“. Read more.
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