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Embryo freezing

Embryo freezing or embryo cryopreservation refers to the process of freezing and storing embryos for future use. Embryo cryopreservation is a crucial part of most IVF procedures.

embryo freezing

What is the purpose of embryo freezing?

A man or woman may choose to freeze and store their embryos for a variety of reasons. They are:
•    Getting another chance of pregnancy if the IVF process fails initially
•    Utilizing the embryos for later to have another baby
•    Preserving embryos before beginning medical treatments such as cancer
•    Donating to someone else in a donor program
•    Donating for research
 

What are the steps of embryo freezing?

Many of the steps of in vitro fertilization are involved in embryo cryopreservation and they are multiple follicle stimulation with FSH, premature LH surge prevention with a GnRH analogue, triggering the process of ovulation, oocyte retrieval, fertilization with sperm and cryopreservation of embryos.
Embryo cryopreservation requires the presence of a male partner or a sperm from a donor. Oocyte retrieval from the woman is the first step of this process. Later the oocyte is fertilized in vitro with her partner's or donor's sperm. After that, cryoprotectants are applied to the embryos and they are stored at subzero temperatures until they are ready to be used.
The embryo is thawed, and implantation plans are formed after the decision to use it is made. 
 

How long can embryos be stored?

The frozen embryos are stored in closed liquid nitrogen refrigerators. Liquid nitrogen can be used to keep embryos frozen for several years. Embryos can only be preserved for a certain period in some countries.

What are the advantages of embryo freezing?

Embryo cryopreservation has several advantages, including a reasonably high success rate in the general population and the use of well-tested methods.

 

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