Egg & Embryo Freezing
Procedures are available for cases where patients would like to freeze their eggs & embryos for future IVF cycles and other treatments.
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We offer both embryo and egg freezing. We have a robust cryopreservation program in place where we freeze eggs and embryos by a method called vitrification at -170 degrees C in liquid nitrogen. These can be preserved for years.
Egg freezing is indicated in two conditions:
- Cancer fertility preservation (oncofertility). Most women who have to undergo cancer treatment in the form of chemotherapy and radiotherapy loose their egg reserve and reach menopause. In women who still have to complete their families, before start of chemotherapy we stimulate the ovaries and take out as many eggs as possible and freeze them for future fertility. However patient must be counselled about the success rate of IVF which is around 50%. Younger patients give better results.
- Women who dont have a partner and are above 30 years. They may preserve their eggs for future fertility keeping in mind the success rate. These women should be counselled to do more than one cycle as more the number of eggs higher the chances of pregnancy. Approximately one mature good quality egg has a chance of 15% for pregnancy
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Frequently Asked Questions
Cryopreservation in simple language means freezing of the embryos. Eggs are fertilized in the IVF lab with sperm; embryos develop which are then transferred into the uterus. Successful implantation of the embryo following this fertilization process in the IVF lab is an extremely important variable affecting IVF success rates. Optimal success rates usually require an average transfer of two or three embryos
- Patients who did not achieve successful pregnancies in that particular cycle in IV may use these stored cryopreserved embryos in the next cycle.
- Patients having successful pregnancies from their “fresh” IVF can use their frozen embryos for a second child after a few years.
- Embryo cryopreservation in IVF also allows patients and physicians the possible option of reducing multiple births by controlling the number of embryos transferred and, at the same time, maximizes the efficiency of the fresh cycle they have already gone through.
- In patients with a risk of severe ovarian hyperstimulation (a rare but serious complication of IVF) when a transfer of “fresh” embryos in that cycle would put the patient at high risk, all of the embryos are frozen and later warmed and transferred to the patient at a later time.
Both are methods of fertility preservation that allow patients to use their healthy, young reproductive materials later on in life. During egg freezing, unfertilized eggs are frozen for use later. In embryo freezing, the eggs are fertilized to create embryos before they’re frozen.
Yes, Women with low AMH levels are still candidates for egg freezing, but they may need multiple egg freezing cycles to reach their goal.
No, not generally. It lasts approximately 15 to 20 minutes, and general anaesthesia is given. Some patients have mild cramping after the procedure and are discharged with a prescription for pain medication.