“Of all the rights of women, the greatest is to be a mother” – Lin Yutang. Motherhood is a cherished dream for most women, however, in today’s times women sometimes are unable to fulfill their maternal desires due to many other priorities like education, career, financial stability, or not having found the right partner. For these women, who are not planning to get pregnant, it is important that they realise that they still have their biological clock ticking and if they don’t take pay heed to it then will lose the chance to have biological children.
Egg freezing is a way to stop the biological clock, and preserve younger, healthier eggs and give women an opportunity to get pregnant when they are ready to have children, explained Dr Parul Kaityar, fertility consultant, Nova IVF Fertility. The best option for women who wish to stop the biological clock and preserve their fertility is egg freezing. It’s a safe and smart option for these women who want to postpone getting pregnant due to their other commitments.
What is egg freezing?
Egg freezing is a procedure in which a woman’s egg are harvested from her ovaries, frozen and stored in liquid nitrogen at –196 degree celsius. The biggest factor that determines the quality of eggs is the age of a woman, as younger eggs are healthier and have a better potential of resulting in pregnancy. Therefore, the sooner one goes for egg freezing, the chance of better quality of eggs increases. Younger eggs have better future potential and one can achieve more eggs per treatment of better quality earlier in life. These eggs can be thawed back and fertilised with the sperms once one is ready to conceive.
What are the steps involved in egg freezing?
Before starting the process, some tests are done to assess the quantity of eggs which is called ovarian reserve testing and the woman’s health.
For the process, she first needs to take some injections which help in stimulating the ovary and results in the growth of multiple mature eggs in her ovaries. These eggs are than harvested using a needle, which is inserted through the vagina under ultrasound guidance . This is a very safe and simple procedure and once harvested, the eggs are checked for quality and frozen by a process called as “Vitrification”.
During the egg freezing process, it is important that the woman takes care of her overall health – nutritious food, regular exercise and adequate sleep are prerequisites. Though alcohol may not impact the quality of eggs, other substances such as party drugs, should be a complete no-no during the ovulation cycle as they could interact with the medicines.
Who should consider egg freezing?
Women who are not ready to have children: Women who want or need to delay childbearing in order to pursue educational, career or other personal goals.
Some families have a history of early menopause, therefore fertility experts suggest women from such families to conceive quickly or if they have any issues they can freeze their egg and become mothers in the future.
Women who have autoimmune conditions like SLE and undergoing bone marrow transplantation or cancer treatment, this technological advancement of freezing egg has come out to be a blessing in disguise.
Single woman gets time
In addition, in case of single women, egg freezing gives them the time to find the right partner and do not have to settle down in a hurry.
Egg freezing is a fantastic technology for women, but they need to remember that freezing eggs does not guarantee pregnancy; therefore they should not delay pregnancy unless and until it is necessary. Secondly, women should opt for it at a younger age for better quality and quantity of eggs, which improves the chances of a pregnancy. Besides, it is important they maintain a healthy lifestyle in order to get the best outcome from the treatment.