IVF with frozen donor eggs process

IVF with frozen donor eggs process

Egg freezing steps

How does IVF work with frozen eggs?

Are frozen eggs better for IVF?

How successful is IVF with donor eggs?

Can you get pregnant with frozen eggs?

IVF with frozen donor egg process step by step

To prepare your uterus for IVF with frozen eggs, you will generally start by taking estrogen orally and also administering progesterone either vaginally or via injections. Once the uterus has appropriately matured, the eggs are then thawed and fertilized with sperm. The resultant embryos are cultured for 3 to 5 days and generally one or two embryos is transferred into your uterus.

To understand how IVF works with frozen eggs, let’s start at the beginning: the initial egg retrieval. If you choose to freeze your own eggs, you’ll likely undergo a treatment plan similar to the early stages of IVF.


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First, a fertility specialist will meet with you to determine why you’d like to preserve and store your eggs, followed by a thorough evaluation of your reproductive health. From there, you may be assigned several weeks of birth control pills to help regulate your cycle in preparation for egg retrieval. About two weeks before eggs are retrieved from your ovaries, fertility specialists will prescribe you a course of hormones a set of injections you’ll need to take for nine to 10 day that help stimulate the follicles in your ovaries. These injections will help your body to quickly mature a batch of eggs.

When a doctor determines that your eggs are mature, you’ll undergo the retrieval process. This procedure is quick, lasting only about 15 to 20 minutes. You’ll be sedated when doctors use a needle to withdraw several mature eggs from your ovaries usually between 10 and 20 eggs at one time which are promptly transferred to a laboratory for storage.

Eggs are prepared for freezing, and then chilled using liquid nitrogen. They’ll be kept at around -196 degrees Celsius, and can be stored for an indefinite amount of time. Some doctors have successfully used eggs that have been in storage for 10 years, so there’s no set rule on how long frozen eggs are viable.

Whenever you’re ready to undergo IVF, you’ll begin preparing your body for the soon-to-be fertilized eggs. This usually requires you to take estrogen and progesterone hormones (some orally, some through injections), to create a uterine environment that can support future embryos. During this time, your frozen eggs are removed from storage and thawed. Partner or donor-supplied sperm is then collected and used to fertilize your now thawed eggs a process that’s called intracytoplasmic sperm injection, or ICSI. ICSI is a recommended form of fertilization that allows doctors to directly inject sperm into the egg, making fertilization more likely. That’s because eggs can slightly harden after freezing, making it difficult for sperm to penetrate and fertilize as easily as they would with fresh eggs.

Within three to five days, fertilized eggs will develop into embryos, which can be transferred to your uterus just as they would in any other IVF cycle. If successful, embryos that embed into the uterus will be on their way to developing what doctors would call a successful round of IVF.


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Egg freezing steps

·        Ovarian stimulation

You'll take synthetic hormones to stimulate your ovaries to produce multiple eggs rather than the single egg that typically develops monthly. Medications that might be needed include:

  • Medications for ovarian stimulation.You might inject medication such as follitropin alfa or beta (Follistim AQ, Gonal-f) or menotropins (Menopur).
  • Medications to prevent premature ovulation.Your doctor might prescribe an injectable gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist such as leuproline acetate (Lupron) or a gonadotropin-releasing hormone antagonist such as cetrorelix (Cetrotide).

During treatment, your doctor will monitor you. You'll have blood tests to measure your response to ovarian-stimulation medications. Estrogen levels typically increase as follicles develop, and progesterone levels remain low until after ovulation.

Follow-up visits will also include having vaginal ultrasound a procedure that uses sound waves to create an image of the inside of your ovaries to monitor the development of fluid-filled sacs where eggs mature (follicles).

When the follicles are ready for egg retrieval generally after 10 to 14 days an injection of human chorionic gonadotropin (Pregnyl, Ovidrel) or another medication can help the eggs mature.

·        Egg retrieval

Egg retrieval is done under sedation, typically in your doctor's office or a clinic. A common approach is transvaginal ultrasound aspiration, during which an ultrasound probe is inserted into your vagina to identify the follicles.

A needle is then guided through the vagina and into a follicle. A suction device connected to the needle is used to remove the egg from the follicle. Multiple eggs can be removed, and studies show that the more eggs retrieved up to 15 per cycle the better the chances of birth.

After egg retrieval, you might have cramping. Feelings of fullness or pressure might continue for weeks because your ovaries remain enlarged.

·        Freezing

Shortly after your unfertilized eggs are harvested, they're cooled to subzero temperatures to preserve them for future use. The makeup of an unfertilized egg makes it a bit more difficult to freeze and lead to a successful pregnancy than does the makeup of a fertilized egg (embryo).

The process most commonly used for egg freezing is called vitrification. High concentrations of substances that help prevent ice crystals from forming during the freezing process (cryoprotectants) are used with rapid cooling.


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How does IVF work with frozen eggs?

To prepare your uterus for IVF with frozen eggs, you will generally start by taking estrogen orally and also administering progesterone either vaginally or via injections. Once the uterus has appropriately matured, the eggs are then thawed and fertilized with sperm. The resultant embryos are cultured for 3 to 5 days and generally one or two embryos is transferred into your uterus.

The frozen eggs are thawed and fertilized with sperm via a process called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). This procedure, ICSI, is strongly recommended after egg freezing since studies have shown hardening of the zona pellucida (the outer layer of the egg) after the egg freezing process. Due to this hardening, ICSI improves oocyte fertilization rates and ultimately success rates. After fertilization, the embryos are cultured typically for 3 to 5 days. At this point the embryos are transferred in the standard IVF procedure.


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Are frozen eggs better for IVF?

Using fresh donated eggs for IVF leads to slightly better birth outcomes than frozen, When the quality of fertilized eggs and the age of both mother and donor were taken into account, the team found that fresh eggs led to good birth outcomes in 24 percent of cycles compared to 22 percent of the cycles with frozen eggs. The rates of embryo implantation, pregnancy and live birth were all significantly higher among the women using fresh eggs compared to frozen, but fresh eggs also led to a 37 percent higher chance of multiple births, which could pose greater risk for both mothers and babies.




How successful is IVF with donor eggs?

The IVF with donor eggs frozen cycle donor egg success rate is 52.3% with clinical pregnancy and 42.3% live birth.

just like with fresh eggs, not every frozen egg will become an embryo statistically, some will be genetically abnormal and unable to fertilize. And not every embryo created will successfully implant into a woman’s uterus. That’s why, for most women, we recommend freezing 12 eggs or one year’s worth of fertility for a good chance at pregnancy. Like everything in life, egg freezing provides no guarantees, but for women who want to delay childbearing, using eggs frozen while they’re young increases the chance of a healthy pregnancy later in life.




Can you get pregnant with frozen eggs?

When you want to use your frozen eggs, they'll be thawed, fertilized with sperm in a lab, and implanted in your or a gestational carrier's uterus.

Your health care team might recommend using a fertilization technique called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). In ICSI, a single healthy sperm is injected directly into each mature egg.

The chances of becoming pregnant after implantation are roughly 30 to 60 percent, depending on your age at the time of egg freezing. The older you are at the time of egg freezing, the lower the likelihood that you'll have a live birth in the future.



10 common questions about IVF with frozen donor eggs process

1Are frozen eggs better for IVF?
(In fact, women who freeze their eggs may have even better chances at pregnancy than a typical IVF patient, because most women undergoing IVF already have an underlying problem with fertility that healthy egg freezers might not have.) This gives us one way to approximate egg freezing success rates
2Is donor egg more successful?
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a donor-egg IVF has the highest success rates of any treatment, with 52% of women showing positive results nationally. No matter whose egg or whose uterus, both must fit certain criteria to produce a successful pregnancy.
3How many fertilized eggs are frozen?
Retrieval of 35 eggs - 31 mature, 20 fertilized with ICSI, 10 embryos frozen, 1 fresh embryo transferred, resulting in a singleton pregnancy.
4Can you buy frozen donor eggs?
An Affordable Option Frozen donor eggs are a more affordable option for IVF treatment with donor eggs compared to fresh donor eggs. One reason frozen is more affordable is that recipients don't pay for the egg donor's travel expenses. ... You receive a set, guaranteed number of donor eggs from the egg donor you choose
5What percentage of frozen embryos survive the thaw?
more than 95th of embryos frozen using this method can survive and cleave after thawing at a later date and one blastocyst will be transferred. For women aged 30–34 using their own eggs, the birth rate per embryo transfer performed was 32.8% for fresh cycles and 27.5% for frozen/thaw cycles.
6How successful is IVF with frozen eggs?
the chances of pregnancy, as stated in the report, are still low, particularly when the woman's own eggs are frozen.” In 2016, egg freezing was successful in 18% of cases, significantly below the 26% overall success rate of IVF. The chances of successful birth increased to 30% when the frozen eggs came from a donor
7How successful is donor egg IVF?
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a substantial 12 percent of all IVF cycles in the U.S., about 16,000 a year, involve eggs retrieved from a donor; and donor-egg IVF has the highest success rate of any fertility treatment—52 percent nationally, upward of 75 percent at the top clinics
8What causes miscarriage with donor eggs?
Common Causes of Miscarriages Infection, hormonal issues, and physical issues can all impact a healthy pregnancy. Lower egg quality can also increase the risk of miscarriage. For women who are looking to undergo the IVF process, it's worth noting that eggs are often of much higher quality
9Why would donor eggs not work?
The cause for IVF failure can also occur in the last stage of process, during the implantation. The egg and sperm may both be healthy, but polyps, cysts, poor blood flow, and a thin uterine lining may lead to a failed implantation of the embryo
10How many eggs survive thawing?
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


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