In many cases, the number of embryos created during IVF is more than will be transferred in a single cycle. In such cases, couples may choose to freeze their embryos so that they can use them again in a future cycle if the first IVF cycle does not result in pregnancy. This is usually much more affordable than going through a full IVF cycle. Below, we will take a look at the cost to freeze your embryos.
Process of Embryo Freezing
The process of embryo freezing, also known as embryo cryopreservation, is a complex one. The process begins with the creation of embryos during a typical IVF cycle. Next, the embryos are frozen under carefully controlled conditions, using either a slow freezing method or a fast freezing method. Whenever the couple is ready to use the embryos, they can be thawed and used in a frozen embryo transfer cycle, in which hormones are used to prepare the woman’s uterus the receive the embryo.
Benefits of Embryo Cryopreservation
There are several situations in which embryo freezing can be useful. The most common use for embryo cryopreservation is in situations where more embryos are created during IVF than can be used in one cycle, and where the embryos are of good enough quality to freeze. Since it is not uncommon for couples to need to go through more than one IVF cycle to get pregnant, freezing embryos helps save time, money, and inconvenience during future cycles. In addition, if a couple does get pregnant during the initial IVF cycle, they can use the frozen embryos to have more children later on if they wish to do so.
Couples may also choose to freeze embryos specifically for the purpose of freezing them for fertility preservation. For example, if a woman is about to go through chemotherapy, she and her partner may choose to go through embryo freezing so that she has a chance of getting pregnant when the treatment is over.
Cost to Freeze Your Embryos
The cost to freeze your embryos is typically much lower than the cost of going through another full IVF cycle. While a full IVF cycle costs $20-25,000, a frozen embryo cycle costs much less, because many fewer resources are used during this type of cycle. The cost of freezing embryos at IVF1 is $300 plus $30 per embryo.
Effectiveness of Embryo Freezing
Several studies have shown that the rate of pregnancy with frozen embryos is similar to the rate of pregnancy with fresh embryos. However, it should be noted that in many cases, not all embryos survive the freezing process – for example, if four embryos are frozen, it may be the case that only two survive and can be transferred. Therefore, patients should understand that there is no guarantee that the embryos will necessarily be suitable for transfer.
IVF1 takes several steps to help ensure that our embryo freezing program is as effective as possible. Just as we only transfer the highest-quality embryos, we only freeze the highest-quality embryos, which helps give the best chance of having a live, healthy baby. Survival rates after thawing embryos at IVF1 average about 98%. If there are concerns about genetic issues, the embryos to be frozen can be screened. We also use a rapid embryo freezing process (vitrification), which has been shown to be more effective.
If you are interested in learning more about embryo freezing, Dr. Randy Morris would be happy to hear from you. To schedule your consultation today, please click below and enter your information or call IVF1 at (630) 357-6540.