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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Egg Freezing

A blog by Dr. John Zhang, New Hope Fertility, December 8, 2015

A growing number of women are turning to egg freezing as a way to preserve their fertility. Despite this, it is common for many women to be unfamiliar with egg freezing. Knowing more about the egg freezing process and its use can help women determine if fertility preservation can address their needs.

Egg freezing frequently asked questions include:

What types of women should consider freezing their eggs?
Egg freezing should be considered by any woman who plans to delay having children. Biologically, a woman is most fertile before age 35. After this, the egg quality begins to decline which can result in difficulty conceiving. Women who want to have children after age 35, for any reason, should consider egg freezing. Additionally, women who are undergoing treatment for cancer or who have another medical issue that jeopardizes their fertility should consider fertility preservation.

How are the eggs frozen and how long can they remain frozen?
Eggs are frozen using vitrification, a method of flash freezing eggs that prevents the formation of ice crystals. When vitrification is used, the survival rate for the freezing and thawing process is 98%. The eggs are then stored until you are ready to use them. Eggs can remain frozen for years without issue, so that women are able to live their lives their way and have a family on their own time frame.

What is an egg freezing cycle like?
During an egg freezing cycle, a woman is closely monitored to ensure that the cycle is progressing as expected. She is provided with fertility medication in order to stimulate her body to produce multiple eggs. Once those eggs are mature, they are retrieved during an outpatient microsurgery procedure. From beginning to end, this process takes two to three weeks. Because fertility medications are used, there can be side effects during the cycle. These side effects are only experienced during the cycle and will go away once the medication is stopped. There is no negative impact on a woman’s fertility after the cycle is complete.

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