Social Egg Freezing —
Thinking about the future and preservation for your fertility is a big decision.
Your circumstances for thinking about fertility are yours, unique to you and therefore, at Monash IVF KPJ, it’s important that you’re well informed about your options.
Freezing one’s eggs, or social egg freezing, gives you options and enables reproductive choices on your terms.
What to Know about Social Egg Freezing:
Social Egg Freezing is a method to preserve and store a women’s eggs for her reproductive future. We understand that fertility declines with age and for some women it may be a challenge to get pregnant later in life. It’s a fact that women are borne with all their eggs they’ll ever have, approximately 1 million eggs at birth, which deplete over time. Our science tells us that at age 30 years, around 10 eggs are needed to achieve a single pregnancy; and at 40 years, around 20 eggs are required.
Social Egg freezing is a fertility preservation option and involves freezing (unfertilised) eggs for non-medical reasons. (Fertility note: male sperm is not required in egg freezing).
There are various reasons why Egg Freezing is considered by women. Some women may not be in the position to have a baby or ready to get pregnant. Related common reasons to preserve female fertility may include:
-Work-life and career are priorities
-Relationship status and still looking for their life partner
-Medical Reasons like having to undergo treatment for cancer including chemotherapy and radiation
-IVF (In-Vitro Fertilization)
Whether you’re living overseas, intra-state or locally in Johor, and you’re considering freezing your eggs, our patients find that scheduling an initial fertility team or nurse chat with us is a comfortable first step in further building their fertility knowledge and understanding the egg freezing process and method.
Egg Freezing Process involves 3 steps:
We’ll start with a refresher about what happens to your eggs during your menses. Your eggs are found in your ovaries. They grow in fluid filled sacs (called Follicles) on the ovaries. Through natural ovulation that happens during your monthly cycle, only 1 single egg will mature and be released, the remaining eggs will die. While in egg freezing, the process helps all the eggs to mature.
1st Step: Stimulation of your Ovaries and Why it’s important.
Ovary stimulation helps increase the number of eggs released in ovulation. In comparison to your regular monthly cycle where 1 egg matures and is released, the stimulation process boosts the ovaries to allow multiple eggs to mature and release. What’s involved in ovary stimulation? Our fertility doctors prescribe a series of hormone medications and injections to help stimulate your ovaries over the course of 10-12 days. The fertility team will provide the best medication plan for you and explain the technique in administering the stimulation medication, which you will do at home. Your progress during the stimulation will be through fertility doctor visits for blood tests and ultrasounds.
2nd Step: Egg Retrieval and Collection procedure.
Once your eggs are ready for collection, you’ll come to our fertility centre where the fertility doctor will perform the procedure, which includes extracting the fluid from your ovary follicle. The eggs are carefully extracted vaginally; there are no incisions. You’ll be sedated with anaesthetic for the procedure, which takes approximately 15 minutes. In preparation beforehand, we advise patients to allow for 1-2 hours for the appointment and suggest that they are accompanied by their partner, family member or friend who can assist and drive them home after the procedure.
3rd Step: Egg Freezing
At this stage, fertility and science are busy at work. Once your eggs are collected, the fertility doctor passes the eggs to our fertility team and scientists. In the lab, the scientists select mature eggs to be frozen. Only mature eggs are frozen. The eggs are removed from the fluid and carefully frozen in the lab through a snap freeze process also known as vitrification method.
Fast Forward- What to do when you’re ready to use your frozen eggs.
Your journey is now focused on Trying for a Baby. To begin, you’ll reach out to your fertility specialist to help tailor your plan in using your frozen eggs and readying them for fertilisation, so they may develop into embryos.
There are many variables that can impact a successful pregnancy. Your chances in falling pregnant using your frozen eggs are predicated upon two main factors a) your age at the point of freezing your eggs and b) how many eggs are frozen.
Having the headspace to think about your reproductive future takes an amount of courage and planning. With social egg freezing you can preserve your fertility. Speak to our specialists or schedule a nurse chat about your questions and concerns.