Egg Freezing


Oocyte cryopreservation, better known as egg freezing, is a procedure during which eggs are removed from the ovaries, frozen, and then stored for future use.

This method of fertility preservation may appeal to people who wish to have children later in their life, females who are about to transition to being male or people with medical conditions that may affect fertility.

Since the number of eggs and the quality thereof decreases significantly past the mid thirties, the procedure is best done before the age of 37. The stored eggs can be used until a woman is 50 years old.

The Process

Consultation – initial consultations involve taking a medical history, blood tests, as well as physical examination

Medication – Medications are administered much like in the IVF process. Injections are given to increase egg production and assist egg maturity.

Aspiration – Aspiration is the process of retrieving a woman’s eggs from mature follicles in the ovaries.The procedure, which is is done under anaesthesia, is completed in minutes.

Preservation – A freezing solution, or cryoprotectant, is added to the retrieved eggs to protect them. The eggs are frozen by slowly cooling them, or by a method that has been found to be more successful, which is vitrification, or fast cooling. The frozen eggs are then stored in incubators.

When one is ready to use their frozen eggs, the eggs are thawed and those which remain intact are fertilised using the Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) fertility treatment. The method of injecting sperm into the egg is done because eggs that were frozen develop a tougher outer layer, making it difficult for the sperm to penetrate.

The Result

The egg freezing is deemed successful if it leads to a pregnancy. Should the egg freezing be unsuccessful, there are alternative ways of falling pregnant, such as IVF, using donor eggs, or trying to conceive naturally.