Embryo Freezing Can Save Money and Provide Peace of Mind
When pursuing in vitro fertilization (IVF) to start or grow your family, there’s typically a good chance that you will end up with more than one embryo. If you find that you still have embryos remaining after conceiving using IVF, embryo freezing can be a cost-effective way to continue growing your family in the future. This method of fertility preservation can also help patients become parents at a later date.
Vitrification Makes This Form of Fertility Preservation Possible
To pursue embryo freezing, you will go through the first stages of an IVF cycle. This includes taking injectable medications to stimulate egg production and maturation and undergoing an egg retrieval procedure. The Ovation® embryologists will fertilize your mature eggs in the IVF lab using sperm from your partner or a donor.
The embryologists will monitor the resulting embryos to make sure that they continue to divide and develop. They will also work to ensure that the embryos meet specific criteria before beginning the freezing process using vitrification.
The vitrification process is a form of rapid freezing that moves embryos through several solutions that remove water from within the cells. This process protects embryos from developing potentially damaging ice crystals during the freezing process. During the next step, the embryologist loads the embryos onto a cryo device and places it in liquid nitrogen. Storing embryos at this extremely cold temperature halts all metabolic activity, and it allows embryos to be safely stored for an indefinite period of time.
When you want to use your embryos to conceive, our embryologists will thaw them. This process involves quickly exposing an embryo to a thawing solution and gently washing it to remove the cryoprotectants. Once the embryo has been thawed, it will continue to rehydrate and expand until your doctor performs the embryo transfer.
Embryo Freezing Is a Great Option for Several Types of Patients
As we mentioned above, patients who end up with multiple IVF embryos often pursue embryo freezing to save these embryos for future pregnancy attempts. In this case, these patients don’t need to go through another round of ovarian stimulation or have another egg retrieval procedure. This saves both time and money.
This type of fertility preservation is also helpful for patients who want to have any form of preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) performed on their embryos. Embryo freezing is also a great way for couples to postpone family building and give themselves peace of mind while doing so.
If you have more questions about embryo freezing, please contact an Ovation partner physician today.