Are Frozen Donor Eggs as Good as Fresh?

Are Frozen Donor Eggs as Good as Fresh?

Are Frozen Donor Eggs as Good as Fresh?

For those who may have difficulties conceiving a child on their own, In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) offers a safe and relatively reliable way to get pregnant. It may also be the only option for gay or lesbian couples looking to have a child that carries at least one of the partners’ genes.

IVF involves extracting the eggs from the mother or an egg donor and either immediately fertilizing it or freezing it to later be fertilized. The embryo is then implanted into the mother’s uterus where it hopefully attaches to the inner wall. Although very similar, using fresh or frozen donor eggs for IVF is not identical.

Who Should Consider IVF?

IVF is definitely not for everyone. If you are a straight couple with no known issues conceiving you should first try to conceive naturally before attempting IVF. However, if you are unable to birth or carry a child and need a surrogate, or if you are a same-sex couple, IVF might be your only choice.

Fresh or Frozen Donor Eggs?

While extremely similar, fresh eggs and frozen eggs are not identical. There is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution to this question. Depending on things such as your age, budget, time constraints, and reason for seeking IVF, the answer to this question will vary.

The Case for Fresh Eggs

A study completed by Duke University and the University of Colorado Boulder in February 2020 concluded that “Using freshly donated eggs for women undergoing in-vitro fertilization (IVF) provides a small but statistically significant advantage in birth outcomes compared to frozen donated eggs”.

The study found that fresh eggs resulted in a 2% better success rate than frozen eggs (24% in fresh vs. 22% in frozen). The study, which examined nearly 37,000 IVF cycles and 3 years of data, found that implantation (of the embryo into the uterine wall), live birth rates, and successful pregnancies were all higher for fresh eggs.

Also, the use of fresh eggs means that you can use an intended parent rather than select from a limited number of frozen egg donors. If the first round of attempts fails, or if you later wish to have another child with the same parent, a fresh donor would easily be able to repeat the process.

You are also entitled to all eggs obtained during the egg retrieval process. Whereas frozen eggs come in “cohorts” of pre-specified numbers of eggs, fresh egg retrieval often results in more eggs than a frozen cohort. This means that you will have more attempts to conceive and if you have extra, they can be frozen for future use.

The Case for Frozen Eggs

While fresh egg donation has proven to be more flexible and slightly more likely to succeed, this does not mean that it is absolutely the right option for you. A major drawback of fresh eggs is that the donor’s cycle must be synced with the recipient’s. This can cost you a lot of time.

For women using frozen eggs, they can begin the IVF process whenever they like, without the need to coordinate with another individual. This can be ideal if you have a constrained schedule, or if you simply don’t want the stress of having to rely on another individual.

A single cohort of frozen eggs also costs less than one of fresh eggs. However, fresh egg retrieval typically results in a higher number of eggs so the chances of successful conception are higher with fresh eggs, not including the fact that fresh eggs are also more likely to implant.

This is also something that you should consider based on personal factors. A study by UPenn Medicine showed that IVF success rates fell off sharply with age. Women younger than 35 have a >20% success rate, compared to 17% for women 35-37, 11.1% for women 38-40, and 5.7% for women 41-42. For older women, fresh eggs are likely a better option as they will have more attempts as well as a slight increase in implantation chance (as reported by Duke University).

Fresh Eggs vs Frozen Eggs

Though everyone should consult a fertility specialist before making this decision, knowing the pros and cons of both methods can save you a lot of time in your search for a sperm/egg donor. Fresh egg cycles are proven to produce more eggs than a typical frozen egg cohort, and the use of fresh eggs has been found to have slightly, but still statistically significant, better odds at successful conception and birth.

Frozen eggs, on the other hand, allow you a lot more flexibility in your timing and can save you the cost of needing to pay to transport your egg donor to you. This could be particularly good for gay couples who would be more likely to need to fly out a potential egg donor.

For the majority of individuals, particularly those who are not overly time-constrained, the studies show that the benefits provided by fresh egg donations outweigh those provided by frozen ones.

About Iranian Surgery

Iranian surgery is an online medical tourism platform where you can find the best doctors and fertility specialists in Iran. The price of IVF Using Donor Eggs in Iran can vary according to each individual’s case and will be determined by an in-person assessment with the doctor.

For more information about the cost of IVF Using Donor Eggs in Iran and to schedule an appointment in advance, you can contact Iranian Surgery consultants via WhatsApp number 0098 901 929 0946. This service is completely free.


What is the Difference Between Frozen and Fresh Donor Eggs?

The main difference between using fresh or frozen eggs is the timing of the egg fertilization process. . Fresh Eggs Fresh eggs are fertilized within hours of retrieval from the donor and then cultured in an IVF lab for 5 days to reach the blastocyst embryo state. At this stage, they are frozen until the intended parents are ready to transfer the embryos. . Frozen Eggs Frozen eggs are not fertilized immediately, but are cryopreserved (frozen) within hours of retrieval from the egg donor. When the intended parents are ready for transfer, 6 or more eggs are thawed, then fertilized, and cultured to the blastocyst embryo stage for immediate embryo transfer. Embryos can also be frozen for later transfer.

Which Option is Better − Fresh or Frozen Eggs?

Choosing between fresh or frozen eggs can be a daunting task for intended parents. This is fair because we know you want to take every precaution to increase your chances of getting pregnant. However, both treatment options have their pros and cons, and it’s up to you to decide which treatment is best for you. When deciding whether to use fresh or frozen donor eggs, there are several factors to consider. FRESH: . Pros: . Proof of practice. Fresh egg donors have been used for IVF treatments since 1984 and have been successful with thousands of live births worldwide. There are decades of research to confirm the success of fresh donor eggs. . Higher chance of live birth. Statistical data show that IVF with fresh donor eggs has a higher chance of live birth. Studies show that the chance of live birth is higher using fresh donor eggs, but the difference is subtle and depends on the clinic. . There are many retrieved eggs. Donors usually produce 10 to 25 good-quality eggs during fresh donation cycles. For parents who plan to have more than one child in the future, this is a logical option to consider. . Egg survival. In fresh cycle donation, eggs do not need to be frozen and thawed, so there is no risk to egg survival. . Cons: . Time-consuming. Matching a fresh egg donor and a receipt can be challenging. . Synchronization of cycles. A fertility specialist should synchronize the recipient’s and egg donor’s cycles with the hormonal drugs. This creates scheduling challenges and causes a person to wait longer for embryo transfer. It also requires a lot of medical, legal, financial, and logistical coordination and consideration. . It is more expensive. Using fresh donor eggs usually costs more. in some cases, it can be double the cost of the frozen alternative. . Risk of cancellation. There are many reasons for stopping IVF cycles (poor response to medications, medical complications, small amounts of retrieved eggs), which may prolong the successful process of pregnancy and birth. . Geographically availability. The availability of fresh donors that fulfill your desired criteria may be limited in your geographical area. FROZEN: . Pros: . No cycle synchronization is required. Planning for frozen donor egg treatment is much easier. Intended parents can plan the pregnancy according to their schedule because there is no need to synchronize the cycles between donor and recipient. Frozen donor eggs can be thawed at any time and the fertilization process may begin immediately (depending on recipient endometrial stimulation). . Shorter waiting times. Most of the time, frozen donor eggs are available immediately, so there is no long waiting list to be matched with a suitable egg donor. Because frozen eggs are already vitrified and in storage, embryo transfer can be done much faster compared to a fresh donation cycle. . Less expensive. When comparing fresh and frozen donor eggs, the cost per treatment cycle is reduced. This is because many costs are shared between multiple recipients. . Comparable outcomes / success. Cryopreservation has advanced significantly over the past decade, resulting in comparable cycle success rates with fresh and frozen donor eggs. . There is no problem with your donor’s ovarian stimulation. The donor eggs have already been retrieved, so you don’t need to face the complications of ovarian stimulation and the problems that may come along with it. . There is certainty in the number of eggs. Since the eggs are already collected, you know how many eggs you will receive before your cycle starts. . Cons: . Lower success rates. While frozen donor eggs are used, the success rate for live births is somewhat lower than the national average. However, many clinics report equal success rates with fresh and frozen donor eggs. . Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is required. An additional fee is required for this necessary step. ICSI is necessary because the process of freezing and thawing hardens the membrane around the egg, and the sperm cannot penetrate it.

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