1. I’ll wait until my mid/late 30s to freeze my eggs:
Ovally now supports patients undergoing in-vitro fertilization (IVF) in addition to our egg and embryo freezing patients, by matching you with clinics that are up to 70% more affordable than comparable top clinics in the US, supporting you throughout your journey as your personal fertility coach, and serving as your individual travel planner for your IVF trip to Spain. That’s why we’re kicking off a new blog post series on IVF, starting with the basics: How does IVF work, and what happens when?
What does the trigger shot feel like, and how is the retrieval under anesthesia? Here’s Ovally founder Kathy’s personal account starting 36 hours before her egg retrieval until a few hours after the procedure. If you’re interested in the hormone stimulation period leading up to the egg retrieval, check out the previous blog post.
We’ve been getting a lot of questions about fertility tests and other predictors of fertility from our customers who’re preparing for their fertility treatment with Ovally. For the purpose of this post, we’re going to focus on women’s fertility and what is available to test it, though keep in mind that it’s only half the story. The one predictor of fertility that probably comes to mind for most of us is age. We could write a whole post about the controversies of age-related fertility decline but will focus on hormone levels and fertility tests here. Suffice it to say that some frequently cited data on age-related fertility decline are very old and come with all kinds of confounds, but there is well established evidence that pregnancy success rates for women needing treatment for fertility issues decrease significantly with age, while rates of miscarriage and chromosomal abnormalities increase. A few studies comparing natural conception rates of women in their 30s and 40s have also shown that conception rates decrease and time to conception increases with age.
If you already know who the biological father of your child(ren) will be or are planning on using a sperm donor for your frozen eggs, it’s worth considering freezing embryos instead of eggs. However, there are also compelling reasons to only freeze eggs instead of embryos. We’ve made both treatments more affordable through Ovally and have listed compelling reasons for either option below so you can make a more informed decision together with your doctor:
Unfortunately, there’s no perfect answer to this question, and there aren’t a ton of data available yet on egg freezing, as it’s a relatively new technique, and many freezers haven’t used their eggs yet. A few studies suggest an average 5-10% chance that an egg will result in a live birth with a range of individual differences. These percentages translate into needing to freeze at least 15 eggs to be relatively sure that they’d result in one baby. The chances seem to increase the younger the eggs are.
Since a baby grows out of just one fertilized egg cell, it seems counterintuitive that you’d have to freeze more than one egg to increase your likelihood that your frozen eggs will result in a baby. However, while eggs seem to survive the freezing and subsequent warming relatively well, the actual IVF procedure tends to be a lot less efficient. You can think of the process from freezing an egg to implanting it in your uterus as a funnel that gets narrower: