Build your family on your own timeline
IVF1 is a member of the Fertility Preservation Alliance. We provide consultations regarding fertility preservation and fertility preservation services including:
- Egg Freezing
- Embryo Freezing
- Sperm Freezing
The freezing of embryos and sperm has long been recognized as a means of pursuing fertility treatments later in life. However, new techniques involving the freezing of eggs have recently resulted in greater success. Now, egg freezing is becoming a common option to secure fertility, allowing people to build their families later in life.
Candidates for egg freezing
Egg freezing offers a promising reproductive option for various individuals and situations. Here are some common candidates for egg freezing:
- Delayed Parenthood: With advances in cryopreservation, freezing eggs at a younger and more fertile age allows the potential to build a family via IVF later in life.
- Individuals Facing Medical Treatments: Patients undergoing treatments that may impact their fertility, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy, can preserve their eggs for future family planning. Learn more about our CryoFertility program.
- Preserving Fertility Before Surgery: Some individuals may opt for egg freezing prior to gender affirming surgeries to maintain their fertility options.
- Soldiers: Military personnel facing deployment or active duty assignments may consider egg freezing as a way to preserve their fertility before being exposed to potentially harmful environmental factors or physical stressors that could affect their reproductive health. Learn more about our SoldierCryo Program here.
- Reluctance to Freeze Embryos: In some cases, personal religious beliefs can be a roadblock when it comes to freezing embryos. However, freezing unfertilized eggs may be a way around this.
Fertility preservation is most commonly pursued by cancer patients. However, any patient facing medical treatment that could compromise fertility is a potential candidate.
Success with egg freezing
Egg freezing has witnessed significant advancements in recent years, leading to improved success rates. The success of egg freezing primarily depends on a the patient's age at the time of freezing, the number and quality of eggs frozen, and the expertise of the fertility clinic. Generally, when eggs are frozen earlier in life, the chances of successful fertilization and pregnancy are higher.
At IVF1, our skilled medical professionals and state-of-the-art freezing techniques, such as vitrification, have excellent success rates and provide individuals and couples with a valuable option for preserving their fertility and achieving their family-building goals when the time is right for them.
Egg Freezing FAQ
In women, fertility declines with age. Those in their twenties and thirties have lower rates of miscarriage and fewer babies with birth defects. This is largely due to the increase in the percentage of embryos with chromosome abnormalities that occurs with age. Because of the problems associated with reproductive aging, many have chosen to use donor eggs to increase their chances of having a child. While this method has proven to be very effective, it is often a hard choice as it entails the greatest sacrifice. With advances in cryopreservation, freezing eggs at a younger and more fertile age has the potential to allow individuals to be their own egg donors later in life.
Normally, when performing in vitro fertilization, the eggs are matured inside the body using fertility drugs. The eggs are removed after they are thought to be mature, which is necessary for it to be fertilized with sperm. These mature eggs can also be frozen.
If there is urgency to begin cancer treatment or if cancer makes ovarian stimulation risky, eggs can be retrieved while still immature. It may then be possible to mature the eggs later on after thawing. This technique, known as in vitro maturation, or IVM, involves maturing eggs outside of the body in a laboratory setting. This procedure does not require hormonal fertility medications, and thus may be a better choice for women who want or need to avoid stimulation with fertility drugs.
In October 2012, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) concluded that there is now ample data to support that fertilization rates and pregnancy rates are similar to IVF when using fresh or frozen eggs in young infertility patients and egg donors. In addition, there has been no noted increase in chromosome abnormalities, birth defects, or developmental defects in children born from frozen eggs. Therefore, the freezing of eggs should no longer be considered experimental.
Data has shown that egg freezing has shown gradual improvement over time with better survival, better pregnancy rates, and lower miscarriage rates. Recent slow freeze studies have reported a miscarriage rate that is comparable to the rate seen in naturally conceived pregnancies. Live birth rates upon thawing, fertilization, and transfer of cryopreserved eggs by either the slow freeze method or by vitrification compare favorably to the rates seen with frozen embryos in many programs. However, in programs that have very high frozen embryo pregnancy rates (such as at IVF1), egg freezing is still not as successful as embryo freezing.
As noted above, eggs thawed after rapid freezing that successfully become blastocysts seem to have an equal chance of producing an ongoing pregnancy. A recent study from Canada showed that the rate of birth defects was 2.5% in babies conceived after freezing of eggs. This is comparable to the rate seen in babies conceived naturally and from IVF. Other reports have found that the incidence of chromosome abnormalities in human embryos derived from frozen eggs is no different than the rate seen in fresh embryos. A study of 200 babies born from vitrified eggs also failed to find any difference in birth weight.
While embryo cryopreservation is still the method of choice for most couples, it has many limitations for those without partners. An individual may face discomfort with choosing a sperm donor, paternity and legal obligations in the case of a known sperm donor, and the disposition of frozen embryos if marriage occurs in the future. With frozen eggs, in the case of divorce, separation, or abandonment, disposition may be easier to handle. In the end, if pregnancy rates after egg cryopreservation continue to increase, the rate of multiple pregnancies could decrease with the use of more conservative practices such as fertilizing fewer eggs and transferring fewer embryos.
Slow Freezing: This method involves introducing a low concentration of cryoprotectant to eggs at a warm temperature, gradually lowering the temperature to -6°C, and then rapidly cooling them in liquid nitrogen to prevent ice crystal formation. Thawing is done quickly to avoid damage from ice crystals.
Rapid Egg Freezing (Vitrification): Vitrification, a rapid egg freezing method with high cryoprotectant concentration, significantly improves egg survival and pregnancy rates. It is suitable for those undergoing fertility-threatening treatments or those without a current partner who want to preserve their fertility for future family planning.
Ovarian Tissue Freezing: An alternative to egg freezing, ovarian tissue freezing involves freezing strips or entire ovaries, preserving the ovarian cortex where most eggs are located, commonly used for cancer patients. It allows for later transplantation, with ovulation typically returning in three to four months, but grafts have a lifespan of about three years or less.
Dr. Morris and staff were very friendly. Dr. Morris was very informative and patient with answering all questions I had. We were uncertain on the options and next steps to take and Dr. Morris explained all the details and options we have. Excellent staff and a great doc.
He is a very professional and good doctor. the whole clinic is very nice. all the staff are amazing. The doctor operated on me for endometriosis and I got pregnant during the second IVF. we have a wonderful 1 year old son. thank you doctor we still have an embryo, I think I will definitely come back to you in a year or two.
I honestly can’t praise this company enough. Dr. Randy Morris bedside manner is absolutely amazing, his staff professionalism and customer service is also amazing. Your experience with this company will be nothing but perfect. From the initial call to the receptionist. To speaking with the nursing staff, billing, etc. everyone wants to help you with family planning. No matter what my outcome is, I know I’m with a co that will make sure I have the best chances. Thank you to Dr Randy Morris and Staff a bunch!
The staff is amazing here. I’m in the middle of IVF and had an issue with a medication and they went above and beyond to make sure everything was done to continue our journey (on the weekend no less); truly above and beyond. The staff are very caring and professional. Definitely recommend Dr. Morris and this amazing practice.
Dr. Morris is by far the best fertility doctor! When I transferred to IVF1 from my previous fertility doctor, he read all my medical records in depth. Never once did I feel stressed or unsure of what was happening. The entire staff there is so nice and make you feel so comfortable. It was so easy to schedule appointments, get medications, or ask a nurse a question. My calls were always returned within 20 minutes. I highly recommend IVF1! Dr. Morris made it possible for us to get pregnant!
I’m so grateful to have been referred to Dr. Morris and his team! I’ve spent the last month or so working with the team and they’ve made what is naturally a hard process both mentally and physically as comforting and easy as possible. Dr. Morris’s success rates speak for themselves, but what I want to let everyone know is that he is equally comforting. A special thank you to Jocelyne, Pam and Barbie, these three women on his staff from front desks to RNs really have made the experience an extremely positive one. PS. My cousin who referred me to Dr. Morris has a smart, healthy and beautiful baby boy who he helped bring into this world!
I don't even know where to start...THANK YOU! Thank you for giving us our son. We went through a year of IVF. Although there may have been things I didn't want to hear (chances of pregnancy, factors out of our control, etc.) it was important to hear the truth and know what our chances were. The staff was always great with us and they were very patient. They really have everything figured out and what the best options out for outcomes. I never felt pressured to make certain decisions and always felt well informed. Again, I can't thank Dr. Morris and all his staff for everything!!!
Thanks to Dr.Morris I am holding today my little dream girl. I don't have enough words to express how thankful I am to him and everyone working in IVF1 Naperville. Highly recomend Dr.Morris and his clinic to everyone looking for real professional help and attitude!
Amazing staff. They made us feel like family. They cried when I called to tell them the birth of our daughter. Starting round two next month. Simply the best. They care!