Fertility preservation is growing in popularity for a number of reasons. Women of today are waiting longer to start a family. Some women aim to achieve their personal goals before starting a family. Other women are looking to become established professionally and then have children. Another group of women may need to preserve their fertility for a medical reason. Advancements in fertility medicine have allowed for a new method of fertility preservation – ovarian tissue freezing.
Ovarian Tissue Freezing Explained
A woman’s eggs are located in the outer layer of her ovaries. During ovarian tissue freezing, the outer layer is removed from the body. This layer contains a large number of eggs that have not yet matured. Once retrieved, the layer is divided into strips and is frozen to be used later. When a woman is ready to have children, the retrieved tissue is placed back into the body and is able to function normally. This allows a woman who otherwise may have difficulty becoming pregnant with her own eggs to start a family.
Benefits of Ovarian Tissue Freezing
With traditional fertility preservation methods, such as egg and embryo freezing, mature eggs are retrieved after a cycle that uses fertility medication. There is a limited number of eggs that can be achieved via this method, with an average of 10 mature eggs being retrieved during a single cycle. When ovarian tissue freezing is done, hundreds of eggs can be retrieved and frozen at one time. There is no need for fertility medication and no need to wait while the cycle progresses.
Further Advancements in Treatment
The field of fertility medicine is continually improving. Great strides are being made in the specialty of in vitro maturation. This process would allow eggs to be matured in a laboratory setting. When this technology becomes widely used and understood, it would avoid the need to transfer the ovarian tissue back. Instead, the IVF process could begin as soon as a woman is ready.
For additional information on ovarian tissue freezing or to learn about your options for fertility preservation, please contact a member of the New Hope Fertility Center team today. Please click the link below to enter your information and New Hope will contact you, or simply call 212-517-7676. Thank you.
In-Vitro Maturization (IVM) is a technique that allows an egg that was not fully developed at the time of egg retrieval, to continue to mature in the lab. An immature egg takes more time to fertilize, therefore a woman’s ovulation time is around 14 days to insure that the egg will be at the proper stage for insemination. A culture medium is used to mature the egg, which contains important amino acids. Occasionally the amino acids can be supplemented with follicular fluid from the donor eggs to enhance egg maturation in the lab.