Egg Freezing: All You Should Know About the Technique

Egg freezing is a technique used to keep the option open to women to get pregnant in the future. Eggs that are harvested are frozen and stored for later use. A frozen egg can be thawed, combined with sperm in a lab, and placed in the uterus. Your doctor will help you understand how freezing works, the risk factors, and whether this fertility method is suitable for you. The procedure for egg freezing in Newport Beach gives women a chance to get pregnant in the future.

Why It Is Done

Egg freezing can be an option if you don’t want to become pregnant soon, but you want to ensure you can get pregnant later. Unlike fertilized egg freezing, egg freezing does not require sperm because they are frozen before they are fertilized.

Like embryo freezing, you will need to use fertility drugs to ensure you ovulate so you can produce multiple eggs for retrieval.

Preparation

Before the egg freezing process, your doctor takes a medical history that focuses on fertility, evaluates menstrual cycle regularity, and performs a series of blood tests to measure hormone levels. A woman’s ovaries typically release one single egg a month. If few eggs are available for freezing, the chances of having a successful pregnancy are lower.

To maximize the number of eggs available, a woman undergoes a hormone treatment to encourage more eggs. This treatment requires a woman to inject hormones into the body while at home between one and three times a day.

Many women will take birth control pills for a month before getting the hormone injections. This reduces the natural cycle and increases hormone effectiveness. A doctor performs regular blood tests to observe the effects of the hormone treatments.

Procedure

The doctor drives a needle into the ovary follicles to recover the eggs after they ripen. The doctor uses ultrasound to guide the process. If the eggs are not evident during an ultrasound, the doctor performs abdominal surgery to remove them. With this invasive method, the doctor makes a small cut in the abdomen while the patient is under pain medication and sedation and inserts a needle to remove the egg.

Once the doctor has obtained the egg, freezing will take place immediately. The eggs are full of water which has the potential to accumulate ice crystals during freezing. Your doctor will inject a solution into the eggs before freezing them to prevent the crystals from forming.

When the woman wants to use her eggs in the future, she undergoes in vitro fertilization (IVF).  With this procedure, the fertility specialist takes the egg and fertilizes it in the lab, using sperm from a donor or woman’s partner.

If the process works, the sperm and egg develop into an embryo, which undergoes implantation in the woman’s uterus.

If you are fertile and not interested in having children soon, consider egg freezing, which enables a person to get pregnant in the future. For more information on preserving your future fertility, contact OC Fertility and book an appointment.

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