Vitrification – what is it and how does it help me get pregnant?
Vitrification is a unique method of freezing eggs, that allows you to prolong your fertility by storing your own egg or fulfil your dreams of a child through the help of frozen donor eggs.
What is vitrification?
Vitrification is a process that allows embryologists to cryopreserve eggs while maintaining their ability to be fertilized and evolve into a baby. The relatively new technique of vitrification results in high survival numbers when the eggs are later warmed. In the case of using egg donation, the overall success rate of fertility treatment with vitrified donor eggs is close to that of fresh donated eggs.
How does vitrification work?
Before the vitrification process can begin, the eggs need to be retrieved from the ovaries. After the retrieval, an embryologist can begin the vitrification process. Compared to sperm cells, eggs are fragile and therefore the vitrification process must begin immediately after the egg retrieval.
The most important part of the vitrification process is the speed of freezing the eggs. Eggs are the largest cells of the body and therefore contains high level of fluid, which may form ice crystals and damage the egg if it is frozen incorrectly. So, the embryologist must remove this fluid and replace it with a cryoprotectant, which helps freeze the egg without forming ice crystals. Once the eggs have been vitrified, it is important to quickly move them to storage, where they are submerged in liquid nitrogen and stored at -196 degrees Celsius.
There is no difference between vitrification in terms of egg storage and egg donation. The process is completely the same, the only difference is the recipient of the eggs.
Why use frozen donor eggs in fertility treatment?
Before vitrification, the only way to use donor eggs for fertility treatment was to synchronize the menstrual cycle of the recipient patient with the egg donor, this meant preparing both women simultaneously which sometimes led to delays and or even cancellation of treatments. When using frozen donor eggs, there is almost no waiting time, you can just choose an egg donor and start your treatment. Another positive aspect of fertility treatment with donor eggs is the selection of egg donors available. Therefore, your chances of finding the perfect egg donors are higher.
If you want to read more about the difference between fresh and frozen donor eggs, then follow the link to our blog page.
The success rates when using vitrification
The process of vitrification has radically improved during the last decade, which has had a positive impact on the success rates when using frozen donor eggs in fertility treatment. Because of the improvements made in the last decade the general success rates when using frozen donor eggs are similar to the success rates when using fresh donor eggs.
At Cryos, we have the highest number of registered pregnancies in the world, and our success rates for frozen donor eggs are excellent because we choose our donors carefully and make sure that the embryologist in your chosen IVF clinic receiving the eggs are properly trained by Cryos skilled embryologists.
If you are interested in learning more about fertility treatment with donor eggs, then follow the link to our page. You can also visit our free Donor Search and see the selection of donors available.