An Introduction to Egg Freezing

Women embark on egg freezing for a variety of reasons – they may be single, wish to prioritise their career, not ready to start a family due to various constraints, or about to embark on medical treatment that may result in infertility.

 

Women are born with a finite number of eggs and there is a constant decline in the number and quality of eggs. This is known as their “ovarian reserve”. When you embark on egg freezing, the eggs are frozen “in time” and so the quality of eggs is preserved. For example, if you embark on egg freezing at the age of 33 and subsequently wish to use your eggs at the age of 39, the quality of eggs remains the same the age you stored them and not the age you are going to thaw them. Your risk of miscarriage is also significantly reduced. 

 

As there is a constant decline in the number of eggs, you can be reassured that embarking on egg freezing does not accelerate the time you reach the menopause. It is also important to understand egg freezing does not guarantee a live birth, but – as with most fertility treatment – female age and the number of eggs collected are the main factors associated with a higher chance of success.

 

Prior to embarking on egg freezing, we will check your “ovarian reserve”. This entails an internal scan and a blood test. This helps us to decide on the starting dose of stimulation and how you will respond to the stimulation. The treatment entails taking injection under the skin for 9-11 days. You will have a scan and blood test every other day. Once the follicles (small fluid filled sacs in the ovaries which contain an egg) reach a certain size, you will be instructed to have an injection to mature the eggs. We will carry out the egg collection procedure under light sedation (not general anaesthetic). This takes approximately 15-20 mins. We will tell you how many eggs we have collected on the day of the procedure. You will be able to go home the same day. You can store your eggs for 10 years, which is the current statutory storage limit.

 

Our recent survey of women embarking on egg freezing showed 91% had no regrets over their decision to undergo egg freezing.

Dr Jara Ben Nagi

For more information please visit our Egg Freezing page