All About Egg Freezing

Egg freezing or oocyte cryopreservation is a process where a woman’s eggs are harvested, retrieved, frozen and stored for future use. It helps women to preserve their fertility so they can achieve pregnancy later in life through in vitro fertilisation (IVF) as their eggs can be frozen and stored for an indefinite time.

As women get older, their number of eggs decreases until they reach menopause while their uterus remains functional well into their 50s. At puberty, there are approximately 250,000 eggs, which reduce to less than 25,000 by age 40, followed by a rapid decline until menopause. There are also a fewer number of quality eggs remaining after 40 which results in increased chances of miscarriages and abnormal babies. Preserving a woman’s eggs when she is young significantly increases the chances of a successful pregnancy and having a healthy baby later in life.

There are a number of reasons for women to consider egg freezing and preserving their fertility:

  • They need to delay childbearing in order to pursue educational, career or other personal goals.
  • They may want to save their eggs before undergoing cancer treatment.
  • They prefer to store frozen eggs then frozen embryos for future IVF procedures, for religious or moral reasons.

The Egg Freezing Process :

1.Fertility Consultation & Assessment

The fertility specialist will order a blood test to determine the level of anti-Mullerian hormone (AMH) and do a transvaginal ultrasound to assess your ovarian reserve or the number of eggs. During the consultation, the fertility specialist will go over the results of the assessment, advise you on the potential outcome, take you through the two-week egg freezing process and what you can expect.

2.Preparation

You will be briefed on the process of preparing for egg retrieval including how to self-administer daily hormone injections for 10 days to help stimulate the ovaries.

3.Observation

The fertility specialist will monitor the progress of the eggs’ growth with an ultrasound, about two to three times during the injection phase.

4.Retrieval Day

While you are under sedation, a fertility specialist will remove the matured eggs by inserting a needle through your vaginal wall in only 15 minutes.

5.Frozen & Stored

Your eggs are frozen in liquid nitrogen in a lab by a team of expert embryologists and safely stored in the storage facility.

6.Defrost & Fertilise

When you are ready to get pregnant, your eggs will be taken out of storage, thawed and fertilised with your partner’s sperm to create an embryo. Through IVF, the embryo will be implanted into your womb to help you achieve pregnancy.

You are sure to have many questions. In addressing infertility, the sooner you have them answered, the better.

Do list them down and call 03-8076 7111 (TMC Fertility & Women’s Specialist Centre, Puchong) or 03 62871209 (Thomson Hospital, Kota   Damansara) or email ask@drnavdeepfertility.com to make an appointment to consult with Dr Navdeep.