22 Jul Fertility Preservation: when can it be done and why is it needed?
In the past, the concept of fertility preservation was considered the stuff of science fiction. However, the last few decades have proved that not only is it possible and completely safe, but millions of people across the globe would be born thanks to it. Modern technologies have given many people today the gift of not having to choose between their modern lifestyles and their most intimate desire to start a family one day.
Most of you probably already know that a woman’s ability to reach pregnancy decreases the older she is, due to a decrease in ovarian reserve and egg quality. Still, this is not the only reason why someone might be considering a fertility preservation treatment. Sometimes, people with certain medical conditions also opt for such a treatment, so as to ensure that they would be able to become parents in the future. The good news is that, nowadays, thanks to the innovative vitrification techniques, eggs and sperm can be cryopreserved without their quality being affected in any way. This is possible thanks to the cryoprotectants introduced to the samples, which protect the gametes from any alteration even at temperatures as low as -196°C!
This possibility gives women a one-of-a-kind control over their future maternity, as their biological clock is frozen at the moment in which they decide to freeze their eggs (oocytes). In simple words, even in the future, they will have the same chance of reaching pregnancy as they had at the time the cryopreservation was performed. Once frozen, the quality of the eggs does not decrease as it naturally does, which allows the woman or the couple to use them whenever they feel ready or whenever the right circumstances arrive. This feature is especially appealing to female patients who have to undergo radio or chemotherapy treatments which are likely to negatively affect their future fertility, or to those who have to undergo surgeries directly affecting their reproductive organs.
For what concerns male patients, the same principle goes: a frozen semen sample allows for gametes’ quality to remain in perfect condition, and most importantly, unaltered. Once it is frozen, even after years, a man’s semen quality would be the same as that of his youth, when he was at his most fertile stage, which would allow for a facilitated future pregnancy of his partner. Most of the time, this technique is the best preventative solution for men who have to undergo aggressive treatments as part of their cancer treatments, which could have adverse consequences for their future fertility.
Without a doubt, those who opt for a fertility preservation treatment are making a choice they will most likely not regret. In any case, whether it’s done for a social or a medical reason, this only proves that these individuals are responsible and that they’re hopeful for their future. They realize that if they do not take preventative measures, one day they might not be able to have their own biological children. When it is done for a social reason, such as wanting to ensure a more stable environment for their baby, it also means that their parenthood journey will start when they’re more mature and more prepared for it. Unfortunately, oftentimes, just when people finally feel that the right moment has come, they encounter difficulties conceiving naturally. This is the part in which modern medicine and technology step in and help compensate for the significantly lower fertility of those individuals.
Lastly, if you’re wondering which is the ideal age for fertility preservation, the most common answer is between 20 and 30 years, as these are both women’s and men’s most fertile years. Presumably, during those years, the egg and sperm quality is the most optimal for them to be cryopreserved. And a good gamete quality is a prerequisite to obtain good quality embryos, which, in turn, increase the chances of a successful IVF treatment.
Not only do we offer the entire spectrum of fertility preservation treatments at Reproclinic, but we also are continuously on the lookout for newer and more innovative methods and treatments.
Remember at REPROCLINIC you will have a TEAM of SPECIALISTS DEDICATED SOLELY AND EXCLUSIVELY TO YOU, as we will attend all your needs in a personalized way and you will always have us by your side. Contact us today to learn even more about the fertility preservation treatments we offer to our female and male patients!