Oocyte cryopreservation or Egg Freezing2018-11-27T19:37:10+00:00

Oocyte cryopreservation or Egg Freezing

I may not be ready to become a mom at this time. By freezing or cryopreservation your eggs will be able to preserve that option for the future, ensuring that the ovules are of the highest quality. The best quality of ovules is between 20-30 years, after which the quality of these decreases, which can translate into problems of infertility and chromosomally abnormal embryos.

The fact of cryopreservation your ovules allow you to concentrate on other objectives without worrying that the fertile window can be closed.

Many investigations have studied the effects of ovarian stimulation and have not found negative long-term consequences. Serious treatment complications are rare, in fact most patients report some discomfort and mild fatigue.

The number of eggs that must be extracted depends on each particular situation, age and reproductive history. In general it is recommended that a minimum of 15 to 20 ovules be frozen to maximize future possibilities. In women older than 35 years it may be necessary to cryopreserve a larger number of eggs.

Cryopreservation puts the ovules in a state similar to glass known as vitrification. In this condition at -196 ºC in liquid nitrogen all the biological processes stop being possible to keep the cell in this state, without aging, for years. Cryopreservation is performed after an ovarian stimulation procedure that allows several oocytes to be extracted in a cycle.

Once the woman is ready, the eggs are thawed, fertilized and put back into the uterus to achieve pregnancy.

Age is the most important factor in a woman’s fertility. The decline of fertility begins at 30 years, being more marked after 35 years.

The fact of cryopreservation of the ovules opens a range of options since the frozen ovules maintain the same quality and viability that they had at the age that the patient had when cryopreserved; that is to say, if the ovules were preserved at 25 years, the quality of the ovule will be that of an ovule of a 25-year-old woman, it does not matter if they are used when the patient is 35 or older.

It is important to emphasize that as you get older two factors of female fertility are affected:

  • Amount of Ovules: Women are born with a certain number of ovules which decreases over the years as each month about one thousand oocytes are lost to make one ovulate. At birth, a woman has an average of 1 to 2 million ovules whose number drops to 400,000 upon reaching puberty, declining progressively over time until approximately 25,000 ova at age 35.
  • Quality: Being exposed for many years to different toxins as well as to the effects of aging, over the years the ovules begin to show genetic (chromosomal) errors, thus increasing the risk of pregnancy losses and infertility.

The cryopreservation of ovules stops the biological clock of the ovules, placing them in “pause” until the woman is ready to use them since the health of the ovules at the time of freezing is maintained for many years.

The uterus does not age like the ovaries. In fact many women manage to get pregnant after menopause thanks to ovodonation so this should not be a concern.

It has been a long process to get where we are in our branch of medicine. In the past, ovules were frozen using less sophisticated techniques that caused many ovules to be lost when thawed.

Currently at Panama Fertility we are proud to offer state-of-the-art techniques that allow 95% of the ovules to survive post-cryopreservation.

In 2012, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine determined that this method should not be considered experimental, therefore recommending that it be offered to patients who need it.

This is a common question. All women have different plans so there is no single and universal answer.

In general we recommend freezing the ovules before the age of 30 in order to obtain the benefit of having healthier cells, however there are women who freeze after age 35 for different reasons, even so it is necessary to remember that the younger they freeze the ovules better although there is no age limit to take control of your reproductive future.

This depends largely on the ovarian reserve and the number of ovules that can be extracted by ovarian stimulation. During the initial consultation we can count the number of antral follicles and thus have an estimate of the amount we will extract per cycle.

To date there have been cryopreserved ovum births 24 years ago without any problem. Beyond that time there is no evidence of the quality of the eggs, although there is no reason to believe that the eggs could have a problem if they remain frozen longer.

Yes. Studies conducted on more than 5,000 children conceived from frozen and thawed ovules show that there is no increase in the rate of congenital defects or in the rate of problems during pregnancy.

In Panama Fertility your ovules are safe. We are located inside a hospital with all the security measures, especially the power plant and even if it were to fail we have battery systems in our clinic that can keep the entire center in operation.

On the other hand, it is monitored that the liquid nitrogen levels are adequate in the storage tanks with electronic alarms and weekly manual measurement.