Egg freezing is also to preserve and prolong your fertile period (for example due to age or for social reasons) using treatment paid for by the patient. This possibility has previously only existed to preserve fertility in young cancer patients prior to the start of treatment. Egg freezing is then carried out at Division of Reproductive Medicine and financed by Region Strockholm, read more here. We also know that the fertilization capacity of eggs decreases with age, which is why we do not offer egg freezing to women over the age of 40.
Thanks to improved health care, mean life
expectancy is steadily increasing in Sweden. Moreover, society is more equal
today than before. This has led to many women wanting to invest in a long
education and career before trying to have children. All in all, it is not a
matter of course that women today want to have children as early as they did
before. Other reasons may be, for example, that you have not found a partner to
have children with or that you have health problems that you want to take care
of before you decide to have any children. Regardless of age, the number of egg
cells you have left in your ovaries may vary.
The staff at Stockholm IVF has extensive
experience of egg freezing. Stockholm IVF works closely with several
world-leading researchers in egg freezing.
It has been difficult in the past to freeze unfertilized egg cells, as they are more "fragile" than fertilized embryos. Through research, a new ultra-fast freezing technique, called vitrification, has proven effective in preserving unfertilized egg cells. The egg is frozen in liquid nitrogen at -176 degrees in less than a second. The frozen egg cells are then sealed in specially designed protective straws and stored in liquid nitrogen. Storage can take place over a period of several years and the egg cells retain their quality from the time of freezing and are then thawed when you want to use them for IVF.
Make an appointment for a consultation This is done by calling the clinic or making an appointment via 1177. The consultation includes a visit to the doctor where you discuss your health history, have an ultrasound scan of your ovaries and you often have to provide a sample of your blood to obtain an idea as to your egg cell reserve (AMH – anti-mullerian hormone test). You will then be given a time for your next appointment or telephone consultation where the test results and the conditions for treatment will be discussed and how many attempts that might be needed depending on your specific circumstances. The consultation includes doctor's appointments, ultrasounds, blood tests and additional visits to the clinic. Price list for treatment, see here.
Hormone stimulation treatment The objective of hormone stimulation is to retrieve a large number of mature eggs. Shortly before egg retrieval, the hormone FSH (or hMG) is used which you take via injection. The injections are taken in varying doses for about 10-14 days. The doctor responsible for planning your treatment will decide which medications and doses you should take. The injection technique is simple and instructions are given at the clinic but you can also watch a film on medicininstruktioner.se. During treatment, we monitor the growth of the ovarian follicles with ultrasound which is usually done on 2-3 occasions. It is normal after a few weeks of hormone stimulation for your stomach and breasts to feel tense and sore. Ring 1177 for advice and if you have any queries. At the pharmacy, you can obtain a container to collect your used syringes. The container shall be returned to a pharmacy after your treatment is over to ensure that the syringes are sorted correctly, read more here.
Egg retrieval When the doctor determines that your ovarian follicles are large enough, the time for your final injection is decided which will induce the final maturation of eggs so that they can be retrieved. It is important to have this injection at the exact time specified as this may otherwise affect the outcome of your treatment. Egg retrieval takes about 10-15 minutes and we recommend that you don’t work on this day because you will be given pain relievers. After the procedure we offer coffee or tea and you can usually go home after a few hours.
If you have previously frozen your eggs at Stockholm IVF, we charge half price for IVF treatment. We recommend using the eggs before the age of 46, as common pregnancy complications (high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.) become more prevalent after that age.
The thawed egg cells are fertilized with your partner's sperm or donated sperm. The day after fertilization, each egg cell is examined under a microscope to see which ones have developed into embryos. The highest quality embryo is chosen for embryo transfer, which hopefully leads to a pregnancy. The chances of pregnancy may be affected by how old you were when the eggs were frozen.
If several embryos, I addition the one transferred in the fresh
cycle, are of good quality, they are
frozen for future use.