Should You Freeze Your Eggs At 40?
on Mar 16, 2013
Dr. Renee Hanton, MD
The truth of the matter is that if you think that you are going to want to use donor eggs in the future, you might actually want to consider freezing your eggs well before you reach 40, to make sure that you have good quality eggs on hand for when you need them.
Many women are looking for ways to extend their fertility. One of the ways that many women decide to buy some fertility time is oocyte cryopreservation, otherwise known as egg freezing. While egg freezing has been around for many years, it is now gaining in popularity as more women wait longer to have a family. Today we are going to tell you everything you need to know about freezing your eggs, so you can decide if it is the right choice for you! Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here
The process for egg freezing is actually pretty simple. Women are usually given fertility drugs to cause their bodies to produce more eggs than they normally would. Usually most women will produce around six eggs after taking these drugs. Doctors will then use an ultrasound to guide them as they retrieve the eggs via a needle. During this process you will be sedated, and it is not painful. The entire process of retrieving the eggs usually takes less than half an hour. After that you will have to take it easy for about an hour until you can be released and sent home. Once the eggs are retrieved, the technicians will remove the water from the eggs so that no ice crystals will form on them. They are then bathed in a sort of “antifreeze” solution so that the eggs will not be damaged by ice crystals. After that, the eggs are stored in their tubes in a liquid nitrogen storage tank. When you are ready to use the frozen eggs, they are thawed. Once thawed, the eggs are injected with a needle that contains a single sperm. Once the eggs develop into embryos, they are implanted in the uterus.
Most experts say that women over age 42 should use donor eggs. This is because a woman’s quality of eggs, along with number of eggs, greatly diminishes after age 40. For women who are younger than 42, most experts recommend egg freezing. However, there are several tests that your doctor will want to do to determine if you are a good candidate for egg freezing. Your doctor will want to check your family history and also how regular your periods are. Your doctor will also do tests to determine how your ovarian reserve is, and possibly a few other tests. There is truly no way to know if you will be a good candidate for egg freezing until you meet with your doctor and have the necessary testing done.
The truth of the matter is that if you think that you are going to want to use donor eggs in the future, you might actually want to consider freezing your eggs well before you reach forty, to make sure that you have good quality eggs on hand for when you need them. The truth is that sometimes you just don’t have enough good eggs left once you hit forty, so you might have to sort of plan ahead and make sure that you have enough good quality eggs there when you need them. Only your doctor will be able to tell you for sure when you should begin to think about freezing your eggs.
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Dr. Renee Hanton is ConceiveEasy's Senior Physician with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. Dr. Hanton specializes in the endocrine causes of infertility, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).