One of the most significant developments in reproductive technology is cryo vitification of oocytes (eggs). This “flash-freezing” technique allows the delicate eggs to be frozen quickly enough to prevent damage.
This revolutionary technique that allows us to freeze and later thaw the eggs for use in IVF cycles offers women new options in fertility preservation.
Many women are delaying pregnancy until their late thirties and early forties. Often, they are surprised and distressed when they learn they no longer have eggs that will produce a pregnancy because they waited too long. They are in their early forties, they look great and feel great; they see celebrities having babies at forty-eight, and they are faced with deep disappointment. Cryo-Vitrification gives women the chance to freeze their eggs while younger, preserve their fertility, and reduce the chances of miscarriage and birth defects associated with “egg age.”
Radiation therapy, chemo and surgery can all cause infertility by destroying a woman’s eggs. Depending on the type of cancer being treated, egg freezing may be an option that gives a woman facing cancer the opportunity to preserve her fertility before she undergoes therapy.
Taiwan IVF Group was among the first practices in the area to offer egg freezing using the cryo-vitrification technique to patients, and now, a few years later, we are seeing successful pregnancies as those patients return, ready to become pregnant.
When patients come to Taiwan IVF Group to have their eggs frozen, they can be confident knowing they are being cared for by highly experienced professionals. At Taiwan IVF Group, we offer on-site frozen eggs storage for a nominal annual fee.
Oocyte cryopreservation is considered to be an approved procedure for fertility preservation by The American Society of Reproductive Medicine.
To schedule a consultation with a fertility specialist:
Call Taiwan IVF Group at +886 36589090 or click here to contact us. Our friendly and attentive fertility consultants are standing by and ready to assist you!
1. To allow for educational pursuits
Pursuing education and advanced degrees requires tremendous energy, passion, and devotion to a future goal. Raising a family is equally demanding. Mixing the two can be a challenge. Delaying reproduction is a choice many women make, and egg freezing offers one more option for saving the vital eggs of today for later use.
2. To have time to develop a business or career
The development of a business or career, from first concepts to a successful, ongoing concern, requires time and commitment. Plans for family are often placed on hold. Egg freezing offers a valuable option for delaying conception to the future – after a career is more established.
3. To give your relationship time to mature
Relationships need time and space to develop. Declining fertility with age puts pressure on available time, potentially undermining the foundations of an early relationship. Egg freezing is one way to relieve this pressure, allowing the relationship to grow at its own pace, without the urgency of family building.
4. To reduce the risk of medical treatments that might impact fertility
Cancer therapy, ovarian cysts, and fibroids are among the medical conditions that can influence fertility. Both the illness and its treatments can impact egg health. Egg freezing prior to treatment is a way to minimize the problems with fertility that may result from such treatments.
5. For a future family
Do you plan to create a family in the future, but now is not the right time? If so, egg freezing could reduce your risk of future fertility problems. Although egg freezing cannot guarantee a pregnancy, it is a useful technique for saving the good-quality eggs of a younger woman for use later in her life.
6. To achieve control over your future
Many women approaching their mid-30s feel some sense of anxiety about their future fertility. Although not all women are certain they wish to have children in the future, many wish to keep it open as an option. Studies with focus groups of single women have shown that women who have already chosen to freeze their eggs report a calming sense of control.
Egg freezing can be beneficial for a number of reasons for women wishing to preserve their fertility for the future including:
Women who want or need to delay childbearing in order to pursue educational, career or other personal goals.
Women diagnosed with cancer. Women with objections to storing frozen embryos for religious and/or moral reasons.
At Taiwan IVF Group, we freeze eggs in the same manner as embryos, utilizing a freezing temperature of -196 degrees Celsius. Based on scientific evidence, as well as our experience achieving pregnancies with frozen embryos – in one case the embryo was frozen 10 years – we are confident that long-term storage of frozen eggs does not result in any decrease in quality.
Based on preliminary data from our study and that of others, egg thaw rates of 75% and fertilization rates of 75% are anticipated in women up to 38 years of age. Thus, if 10 eggs are frozen, 7 are expected to survive the thaw, and 5 to 6 are expected to fertilize and become embryos. Usually 3-4 embryos are transferred in women up to 38 years of age. We therefore recommend that 10 eggs be stored for each pregnancy attempt. Most women 38 years of age and under can expect to harvest 10- 20 eggs per cycle.
To date, Taiwan IVF Group has cryopreserved the oocytes of more than 200 women. Of those who have returned for their eggs, 15 of 21 (65%) have delivered babies. There are two standards to judge egg freezing. One standard is fresh, never frozen embryos and the other is frozen embryos. Our initial 65% frozen egg pregnancy rate is above that of fresh embryos and twice that of frozen embryos. Other centers using similar techniques have achieved pregnancy rates as good as frozen embryos. Since the number of patients that have undergone embryo transfer from frozen eggs is small, more studies will be necessary to confirm these encouraging results.
Expectations are that pregnancy rates from frozen eggs will depend on the women’s age at the time she freezes her eggs, but will not be affected by the age at which she comes back to use them. Therefore, the chance of future pregnancy in women older than 38 at the time of freezing is likely to be lower than that seen for younger women. To date, there are few reports of pregnancies in women over 38 from frozen eggs. This is mostly due to lower age cutoffs in egg freezing studies and the relatively low number of women who have come back to use their frozen eggs so far.
At Taiwan IVF Group, ongoing pregnancies have been achieved in women 40 and older at the time they froze their eggs. Additionally, pregnancies are routinely achieved in women up to age 43 using fresh embryos. We may find with further egg freezing research that we are able to mimic these rates; however, we do not know if eggs from women over 40 years of age will respond in the same manner to freezing as those from women 40 years of age or less.
To date, approximately 5,000 babies have been born from frozen eggs. The largest published study of over 900 babies from frozen eggs showed no increased rate of birth defects when compared to the general population. Additionally, results from one study showed no increased rates of chromosomal defects between embryos derived from frozen eggs compared to embryos derived from fresh eggs.
In 2014 a new study showed that pregnancy complications were not increased after egg freezing. There have also been over 300,000 children born worldwide from frozen embryos using primarily slow-freeze cryopreservation techniques, without an increase in birth defects. Although these data are reassuring, it will take many years of follow-up to ensure that babies born from egg freezing technology have no higher rates of birth defects than those conceived through other means.