The Egg Freezing Process
Egg freezing is a method of cryopreservation used by couples and individuals on their path to parenthood. Using Cryos, you can plan for future pregnancy without the timeclock worry.
What is the egg freezing cycle for fertility preservation?
Once you have finalized your decision to freeze your eggs, the complete egg freezing cycle takes up to 8 weeks and includes the following steps:
Step 1: Ovarian suppression
Ovarian suppression lasts for 2-4 weeks. We use birth control pills to temporarily turn off your natural hormones (this step may possibly be skipped in urgent cases, such as prior to cancer therapy).
Step 2: Ovarian stimulation
Ovarian stimulation lasts between 10-14 days. At this point, self-injected hormone therapy is utilized to stimulate the ovaries and develop multiple mature eggs in both ovaries. During this period, you will need to make 5 – 7 visits to the physician’s office for ultrasounds and bloodwork to monitor your progress.
Step 3: Ovulation induction
When the ovarian follicles are determined to have reached appropriate maturity, ovulation is triggered with a specific medication, where specific timing is vital to your success.
Step 4: Egg retrieval
Exactly 36 hours after ovulation induction, your eggs are harvested and removed with a needle guided through a vaginal ultrasound device. This procedure is done under intravenous sedation (IV) and is generally painless. Some women are a little sore after the procedure and experience some bloating.
Step 5: Egg vitrification
Following the retrieval, the eggs are evaluated to assure that only mature eggs are frozen in a process called vitrification. Because more eggs are matured during the stimulation process than would be during a regular cycle, some of your retrieved eggs will not be mature and therefore will be unable to be frozen. This is normal and expected. Your mature eggs will be vitrified by our in-house experienced embryologists.
Vitrification is a process in which the liquid in the egg is removed and replaced with a cryoprotectant. Once the egg is loaded with cryoprotectant it is submerged in liquid nitrogen (-196°C / -320.8°F) and the egg is “flash frozen”. Once your eggs are frozen, we store them in our storage tanks and you can use them when you are ready to become a parent.
Do you have any questions?
Cryos would be more than happy to assist you! Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable bilingual Client Service Representatives.
Call us at (407) 203-1175 or email us at [email protected].
We also have a live online chat that you can access through our website here.