Childbirth comes within an age bracket. Women feel this more so than men. Career demands or other personal choices can delay the time to get pregnant. Thus, freezing your eggs can prove to be beneficial, if you delay childbirth to focus on your career or education, or if you have certain medical conditions such as cancer.
- Egg Retrieval: Before the eggs are harvested, there is a lot you have to do. The first month is spent taking blood tests and ultrasounds. In the second month, you will have to take medicines before your procedure for egg retrieval. Ultrasounds and blood tests are also conducted at this stage to monitor the growth of the eggs. Around the time of your ovulation, the eggs will be harvested. You will be lightly sedated during the procedure. After the procedure, you might feel bloated and experience cramping. At least 15 eggs are retrieved for optimum chances. The medicines prescribed are all hormone injections which you can self-administer.
- Freezing and Storage: The largest human cell is the egg. It is comprised mainly of water. When the eggs are frozen, crystals can form which can destroy it. So an anti-freeze replaces the water after the eggs are dehydrated. This prevents crystal formation. Eggs are frozen using vitrification. In this process, the eggs are either slowly or flash frozen. Eggs can be frozen for as long as 10 years. This does not hamper the quality.
- Risks: There is no guarantee that freezing eggs will lead to having a baby. Sometimes, eggs do not survive the freezing or the thaw.
- Advantages: For women who are suffering from cancer, freezing their eggs might be the best option. They might want to preserve their fertility before their cancer treatment starts. This is useful since radiation and chemotherapy can harm your chances of getting pregnant.
The obvious advantage of freezing your eggs would be the fact that it gives you time. It lets you decide and keeps you one step ahead of your biological clock. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.
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