Fertility Fact Friday
For some of us the fertility journey God has us on may include pursuing fertility treatments. One of the fertility treatments suggested to some patients is in vitro fertilization. IVF, as it is popularly known, is a treatment including fertility drugs to stimulate egg production. With increased egg production comes the higher probability of fertilized eggs becoming embryos. The fertilized embryos are then transferred to the womb.
For some women the embryos created are numerous, so much so than what a fertility specialist will transfer within one cycle. Therefore leaving the remaining embryos to be frozen (cryopreservation) or future use.
WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH LEFTOVER FROZEN EMBRYOS?
Here are the options:
- Use the frozen embryos to build your family at a later date
- Donate embryos to another family (Embryo Adoption)
- Donate embryos for scientific research
- Compassionate Transfer (transferring an embryo into the woman’s uterus at a time during her menstrual cycle when it is unlikely for her to become pregnant)
- Thaw embryos and discard at a future date
In our quest to have children sometimes we don’t stop to think what will be the outcome of the fertility treatments we partake in. Sometimes the fertility specialists don’t address the fact of what to do with the “leftover embryos”, therefore leaving another ‘heavy’ question for you and your spouse to decide at a future date. And, or, the cost of storing the embryos.
Presently there are over 400,000 frozen embryos stored in the United States alone. One person recently said, “a frozen little orphanage.” is out there.
My suggestion to you is (if you are pursuing in vitro fertilization):
- Ask your doctor his / her plan on how many embryos retrieved in one cycle
- How much does it cost to store frozen embryos? How long can they be stored and remain viable?
- Pray and be led by His perfect peace
- Be in agreement with your spouse / partner in pursuit of any treatment and how to use the embryos after your fertility treatment
Hope this helps!