Posted On Nov 09, 2022
6 min read
6 min read
Egg preservation, also known as egg freezing, or mature oocyte cryopreservation, is a technique used for saving a woman’s ability to get pregnant in the future. Unfertilized eggs taken from the ovaries are frozen and kept for later use. In-vitro fertilisation is the process of combining a frozen egg with sperm in a lab and implanting it in the uterus (in vitro fertilization). Egg preservation is a new technology that involves the extraction, freezing, and storage of female eggs. These frozen eggs are then warmed, fertilised, and transferred to the uterus whenever the woman decides to become pregnant. The opportunity to guarantee motherhood through egg freezing allows women to avoid compromising because of the ticking biological clock. Oocyte freezing to prevent age-related infertility has become a new medical and societal phenomenon as a result of the advent of successful egg preservation technology.
Egg preservation is the method that involves freezing eggs at extremely low temperatures so that they can be used later on if necessary. At Manipal Hospitals, our eminent team of experienced and internationally trained physicians provides egg preservation techniques to guarantee motherhood. Manipal Hospital is providing the best egg preservation or cryopreservation in India as it is well-equipped with instruments and state-of-the-art technologies to handle any type of emergency situation during the procedure. Check out the below-mentioned links to know about the contribution of Manipal Hospitals towards Women's Health.
If a woman wants to ensure that she can become pregnant in the future but isn't ready to do so right away, egg freezing may be a possibility. Egg freezing doesn't require sperm because the eggs aren't fertilised before they are frozen, unlike embryo cryopreservation (freezing of fertilised eggs). However, just like with embryo freezing, they will need to take fertility medications to induce ovulation in order to create numerous eggs that can be harvested. Visit our obstetrics and gynaecology hospital in Bangalore to know more.
Women usually go for egg preservation in the following conditions:
If the woman has a health issue or situation that could impact their fertility.
One might require therapy for cancer or another condition that may prevent them from becoming pregnant.
If the woman is undergoing in vitro fertilization.
If someone wants to preserve their younger eggs for the future.
The desire to have children is a widespread one among all women. In the late 20s, female fertility starts to decline, but conception rates continue to be high far into the 30s. After age 35, the decline quickens, and by the time the woman reaches age 45, she has almost no chance of becoming pregnant. Furthermore, due to age-dependent changes in egg quality, women over 35 have a higher risk of miscarriage and/or genetic defects in their offspring.
Many women put off starting a family while looking for a life partner, and many more do so for economic, educational, or professional reasons. Historically, the only alternative available to female patients was embryo cryopreservation. This approach, while effective, has a significant drawback in that it needs a source of sperm to produce the embryos. Therefore, it is clear that single women have no other options. Fortunately, the development of egg preservation technology has made it possible to actively preserve the fertility of women until they are ready to start a family. All the women who are worried about their future fertility have hope thanks to the egg preservation technique. It significantly enhances a woman's likelihood of having children in her later years.
If any woman is thinking about freezing her eggs, they need to find a reproductive clinic with experience in the procedure. Reproductive endocrinologists are the terms used to refer to specialists. They should come up with all the required information regarding fertility clinics' pregnancy and live birth rates as very little data on pregnancies using frozen eggs is available. The success rate of the clinics depends entirely upon several factors, such as the patient’s age for carrying out the treatment.
If the individual is worried about the cost of egg preservation, they should find out how much each step of the process will cost, along with the annual storage fees. Consult with our gynaecologist in Bangalore to have the best treatment.
Women probably undergo a few screening blood tests, such as:
On day three of the menstrual cycle, the doctor may perform a blood test to measure the levels of follicle-stimulating hormone and estradiol to evaluate the quantity and quality of the eggs. Results can be used to forecast how the ovaries will react to fertility drugs. Further blood work and an ultrasound of the ovaries may be done to obtain a more comprehensive picture of ovarian function.
Women may undergo testing for infectious diseases like hepatitis B and C and HIV.
A cycle of egg preservation involves no cost and is comparable to the first stage of any IVF treatment. It calls for daily hormonal injections for women. The ovaries are stimulated to create a large number of eggs as a result. The woman's age and ovarian reserve are key factors in this situation; a young reproductive age and a healthy ovarian reserve produce numerous eggs and favourable results. Eggs are extracted with a 10-minute operation under local anaesthesia after 10–12 injection doses. After retrieval, they are examined, and the healthy ones are vitrified, or quickly frozen, to preserve them. They are kept at a temperature of 196 degrees to prevent a drop in quality over time. They are kept in the lab at a reproductive clinic, at a long-term storage facility, or at a frozen egg bank, where they are kept frozen in liquid nitrogen.
When a woman wishes to become pregnant, she defrosts her frozen eggs using warming agents, and then she injects their sperm into the defrosted eggs to fertilise them. The quality of these fertilised eggs, or embryos, is determined after three to five days of culture. A catheter is then used to implant a high-quality embryo into the woman's uterus. Compared to human eggs, sperm and embryos are simpler to freeze. Human eggs contain more water than other types of eggs, which causes ice crystals to develop while freezing, lowering the quality of the eggs. However, the development of modern vitrification technology prevents the creation of ice crystals, and the application of cryoprotectants prevents harm brought on by ice crystals during freezing. Book an appointment to know more about the treatment procedure.
Since no biological activity occurs during cryopreservation, eggs or embryos may theoretically be stored indefinitely as well. The longest period of time an embryo has been documented to be frozen, thawed, and result in a healthy delivery in the medical literature is twelve years. The techniques for freezing and thawing continue to advance, so it's likely that eggs or embryos frozen more recently will produce even better results.
The woman will be equipped with drugs to arrange the uterine lining once she and her partner are able to start a family. Using the ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection) method, the frozen eggs will be defrosted and fertilised with their partner's sperm. After two or three days, the embryo transfer will be scheduled.
Some side effects and risks may occur that vary as per an individual’s condition, such as:
Diseases associated with the use of reproductive medications: Rarely, using injectable fertility medications to stimulate ovulation, such as a synthetic follicle-stimulating hormone or luteinizing hormone, can result in the ovaries swelling and hurting shortly after ovulation or egg retrieval (ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome). Abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea are some of the warning signs and symptoms. The chance of acquiring a more serious, potentially fatal, variant of the illness is much more unlikely.
Problems during the egg retrieval procedure: On rare occasions, retrieving eggs with an aspirating needle might result in bleeding, infections, or damage to the colon, bladder, or blood vessels.
Emotional risks: Although there is no guarantee of success, egg preservation might give women hope for a future pregnancy.
The likelihood of miscarriage if someone uses frozen eggs to conceive will mostly depend on the age at which the eggs were frozen. Older women miscarry more frequently, primarily because their eggs are older.
An estimated cycle for a woman under the age of 35 may produce 10 to 12 eggs, of which 7-9 may be appropriate for freezing and storage. 80–90% of eggs survive future warming, and 50–80% of these fertilised eggs develop into embryos. Failure rates are reduced for women over 35, while egg freezing in women over 38 makes conception less likely. Therefore, the woman's age, the quality, and the number of eggs retrieved are crucial for the effectiveness of egg freezing.
Until recently, egg preservation was exclusively available for medical purposes. Today, healthy, fertile women around the world embrace this medical advancement to delay childbearing for a variety of reasons.
Reduced fertility in women with medical problems, including severe symptoms of endometriosis, has been observed. It is beneficial for ovarian reserve following surgery and autoimmune illnesses needing gonadotoxic treatment.
It is helpful for planning the reproductive career for women who are at risk of early menopause.
It is observed that this allows the storage and accumulation of oocytes from different stimulations before IVF.
Emergency egg preservation is used as a backup for such patients who have unexpectedly non-available sperm on the day of oocyte retrieval for IVF.
Hence, egg preservation is considered a well-stabilized technology, providing several benefits to patients in the upcoming future.
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