ELECTIVE FERTILITY PRESERVATION
Elective fertility preservation is a technology in which a woman’s eggs are removed or a man’s sperm collected, frozen, and then stored for use at a later date. A viable option for women and men who would like to have children in the future but are not ready to be a parent for personal and/or professional reasons.
A woman’s fertility potential is highest in her twenties, gradually drops in her early thirties, and then rapidly declines each year after age 35. Technology allows us the opportunity to delay building a family until a woman is ready.
A treatment cycle can take up to 5 weeks. During this process the woman is stimulated with fertility medications and her eggs are removed using vaginal ultrasound guidance, and then cryopreserved (frozen). When the woman decides she is ready to become pregnant, her eggs are then thawed and fertilized with sperm to create embryos. At that time embryo transfer takes place.
If the woman wishes to freeze embryos instead of eggs, the extracted eggs are fertilized after retrieval and then frozen.
Elective sperm freezing (cryopreservation) may be done for a wide variety of reasons. Men who fall into the following categories may want to consider this process: men with declining sperm count, men who work in high-risk occupations, men who are planning to undergo a vasectomy, or men who wish to freeze their sperm for use at another time and/or place.
Freezing sperm requires sperm to be collected and then an infection screening and laboratory analysis is completed followed by the freezing of the sperm. When the man decides he is ready to build a family, his sperm is then thawed and used to fertilize an egg to create an embryo/s.