Author Topic: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?  (Read 16881 times)

Lyssa

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Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« on: March 18, 2015, 08:55:53 AM »
I'm seriously thinking about freezing some of my eggs (or oocytes, to use a fancier word). I'm going to have my first appointment (just consultation) with an expert MD on monday and was wondering if any of the women on this board/or any SO of the men on this board have already done it and if you would like to share your experiences? I'd also like to hear from somebody who has thought about but decided against it.

WhatIsFrugalAfterAll

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2015, 09:26:34 AM »
What is the reason for this?

Are you say 29 and thinking you might not want a kid till 40?  Or what?

I heard talk of this a lot in corporate circles, i.e. big CEO woman has no time for kids till she is 55, so freeze em young. I have not heard it a lot in frugal circles, but maybe it is actually a genius idea. Skip kids from 20-35 so you can work really hard and save a huge stash. Freeze a set of eggs in your 20s. Then at 36 retire, pop some frozen eggs, and start a family.

Possibly genius move ;)

HazelStone

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2015, 09:42:46 AM »
Remember, your eggs are not the only thing that has issues with age. Your uterus could become less "cooperative" with age. Google fibroids if you aren't familiar with them already. If you go that route you may end up needing a surrogate depending on how your lady bits age.

APowers

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2015, 10:22:30 AM »
I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...

lakemom

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2015, 12:30:13 PM »
I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...

Me too!!!  Had to read twice I was so confused.  I freeze chicken eggs all the time when farm fresh are abundant in the Summer but never my own (haha)!

studentdoc2

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2015, 12:33:04 PM »
It should be noted that the success rate of the use of frozen eggs are still pretty low (at least, lower than many assume -- 30-60%). It's not usually recommended for women just aiming to delay childbearing. Of course, there is ongoing work on improving the process. I'd considered it due to the constrains of my education/career training, but ultimately decided that the costs plus the low success rates really don't merit it (for me). If my partner and I push having children late enough that fertility is an issue, we've already decided that we'll adopt.

MsPeacock

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2015, 04:46:20 PM »
I haven't done it  - and I am done having kids. However, I have several friends who either froze eggs or froze embryos.Embryos were done for fertility reasons - for IVF. Eggs were done due to increasing age and no partner and wanting to have a chance at having kids later.  I also have a friend who had twins w/ donor eggs. Frankly, if having children who are genetically yours is important to you, and you expect to be able to handle the later costs of IVF, and other health factors are favorable, I see nothing wrong with it. Personally, my kids are the happiest best most wonderful people who ever happened to me - so I would never discourage anyone from trying something that would bring them children they want.

Yes  - adoption is also an option - and often as costly as eggs/embryo/ivf whatever. I have friends who adopted through foster care (so less expensive) and it was quite the negative experience that stretched over many years and an unbelieveable amount of heartbreak.

Having kids is one of those decisions that really doesn't have a financial upside. I mean, kids basically  never make you money (unless you are some weird reality star or something). To me banking eggs is the kind of decision that is made outside of most financial considerations (assuming you can afford the start up costs). You do it because you expect the emotional return to be worth the financial costs.

Acg

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2015, 05:40:06 PM »
My wife did IVF because I have cancer and there is a potential relationship between chemotherapy and birth defects which we didn't want to risk - so I froze sperm before I started treatment.  I don't know if the process is different if you're just freezing eggs as compared to freezing fertilized embryos but it was a long process before and after the egg retrieval which consisted of 1 or 2 shots per day.  It wasn't very fun or cheap so I wouldn't recommend it unless you had to do it for some medical reason.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2015, 10:50:02 AM »
What is the reason for this?

Are you say 29 and thinking you might not want a kid till 40?  Or what?

I heard talk of this a lot in corporate circles, i.e. big CEO woman has no time for kids till she is 55, so freeze em young. I have not heard it a lot in frugal circles, but maybe it is actually a genius idea. Skip kids from 20-35 so you can work really hard and save a huge stash. Freeze a set of eggs in your 20s. Then at 36 retire, pop some frozen eggs, and start a family.

Possibly genius move ;)

Im in my early thirties and in a steady relationship without being married. We probably want to have kids later in our life (late 30ies, early 40ies). We probably are going to be FI by then but this is not the main reason for us wanting to have children later in life. But I see how it could look like a genius plan made up by robot-like vulcans if it all pans out. :-)
« Last Edit: March 19, 2015, 11:03:26 AM by Lyssa »

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2015, 10:54:05 AM »
Remember, your eggs are not the only thing that has issues with age. Your uterus could become less "cooperative" with age. Google fibroids if you aren't familiar with them already. If you go that route you may end up needing a surrogate depending on how your lady bits age.

Given my age I have the reasonable expectation of my uterus still being fine eight years from now. Not so sure about my ovaries... Surrogacy is not allowed in Germany but I think it is allowed to 'export' eggs (but not embryos). One more question I'll ask on Monday.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2015, 10:55:21 AM »
I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...

Me too!!!  Had to read twice I was so confused.  I freeze chicken eggs all the time when farm fresh are abundant in the Summer but never my own (haha)!

Do you slow-freeze or vitrify? ;-)

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2015, 10:59:36 AM »
It should be noted that the success rate of the use of frozen eggs are still pretty low (at least, lower than many assume -- 30-60%). It's not usually recommended for women just aiming to delay childbearing. Of course, there is ongoing work on improving the process. I'd considered it due to the constrains of my education/career training, but ultimately decided that the costs plus the low success rates really don't merit it (for me). If my partner and I push having children late enough that fertility is an issue, we've already decided that we'll adopt.

Do you have a source for those numbers? I heard/read about 8% for each egg and the clinic I'm going to visit generelly recommends retrieving 25 eggs to have a reasonable good chance to have two children.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2015, 11:02:05 AM »
@ MsPeacock and Acg,

Many thanks for sharing your experiences. Those are exactly the pros and cons going through my head. Most important con being the invasive nature of the whole procedure.

partgypsy

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2015, 11:51:51 AM »
To be honest if I was in your situation, and could handle it financially, I would definitely consider it. In addition to reduced fertility with age, eggs "age" that is the eggs you release mid thirties onward are more likely to have genetic problems than younger eggs, and also the body is less likely to reject them, which = higher chances of having a child with problem with "old" eggs.
If you think you could be able to stretch having a kid in mid thirties, I would forgoe the freezing and let nature take its course. Beyond that, it may be a good compromise between wanting to delay children yet being able to have healthy, genetically related child or children. The issues regarding old uteruses are not nearly as serious an issue as with eggs. Keep in mind age, drug use, etc also affect sperm health.


misschedda

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2015, 11:53:01 AM »
I haven't frozen eggs for my own use, but I did go through the whole process of donating eggs which were then frozen for another woman to use. It is an invasive process that involves a minor surgery, but I found it very easy. Shots are easier to give yourself than I expected, they don't hurt, and the surgery is the kind that you do under twilight sedation and recover from in a day (like wisdom teeth).

I do think it's a serious enough procedure that it should warrant some serious thought before going through with it.

studentdoc2

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2015, 12:42:26 PM »
It should be noted that the success rate of the use of frozen eggs are still pretty low (at least, lower than many assume -- 30-60%). It's not usually recommended for women just aiming to delay childbearing. Of course, there is ongoing work on improving the process. I'd considered it due to the constrains of my education/career training, but ultimately decided that the costs plus the low success rates really don't merit it (for me). If my partner and I push having children late enough that fertility is an issue, we've already decided that we'll adopt.

Do you have a source for those numbers? I heard/read about 8% for each egg and the clinic I'm going to visit generelly recommends retrieving 25 eggs to have a reasonable good chance to have two children.

These were the numbers discussed in my medical school classes. I just did a brief lit search for some studies published on the issue. The first three I found:
303 oocytes thawed --> 122 suitable for day 5 transfer; out of the 58 embryos transfered, 62% pregnancy rate and 41% implantation rate (Noyes N et al 2010)
153 oocytes thawed --> 80 suitable for transfer; out of 47 transferred, 26 implanted (Nagy ZP et al 2009)
395 oocytes thawed --> unclear how many suitable for transfer, maybe 206?; 53 transferred --> 24 implanted --> 13 produced live births (Kim TJ et al 2010)

So, the success rate obviously depends on whether you are talking about the success rate of thawed ooctyes or transferred embryos. In any case, the studies are a few years old and practices continue to improve.

I don't share any of this to dissuade you (or anyone) -- I just think the general opinion of success rates with frozen oocytes tends to be a little more optimistic than the data suggest, and it's important to have an understanding of what may be in store so you can make an informed decision. It sounds like you are doing just that.

As I've said, my partner and I have already made the decision to go the adoption route (foster to adopt) for any children we have in our late 30s/early 40s. However, I am glad that social egg freezing (as opposed to medical egg freezing) is becoming an option for women, and I hope that progress continues to be made in the area.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2015, 02:22:42 PM by studentdoc2 »

bogart

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2015, 12:48:38 PM »
You can find statistics on success rates e.g. here:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25657073
and here:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22532814

(Interestingly, both those articles are based on German data; I wonder if this technique is more "popular/advanced" your way?)

The latter abstract has this:
"The highest attainable likelihood of pregnancy after the use of a combination of cryopreservation techniques is estimated at 40% to 50%. Fertility preservation is generally not covered by health insurance; its cost ranges from several hundred to several thousand euros."

My impression, given the absence of other problems, is that freezing your eggs now is not known/believed to reduce the likelihood of unassisted success later (that is, that it might help but does not hurt your overall chances).  Of course a doctor could give you better information about this than a random stranger on the internet -- go figure.

I have done IVF (repeatedly, for reasons different from yours); while I totally concur that it's not that hard to give yourself shots, I still found the whole process pretty stressful and unpleasant (and you're pretty much talking about doing IVF to freeze eggs, albeit breaking the two phases of the cycle up with a long interlude).  OTOH the IVF itself was much less stressful and unpleasant than the infertility that led me to need it, so there's that.

I'm in my early thirties and in a steady relationship without being married. We probably want to have kids later in our life (late 30ies, early 40ies). We probably are going to be FI by then but this is not the main reason for us wanting to have children later in life. But I see how it could look like a genius plan made up by robot-like vulcans if it all pans out. :-)

Given that you are partnered and this sounds like something you are considering as part of a pair -- I'm 99% certain that harvesting and fertilizing eggs, and freezing the resulting embryos (given that you do not want to start having children now), would predict much higher likelihood of success than freezing eggs.  Of course, if you and your partner later go separate ways or find yourselves in disagreement about whether or not to have children together, having frozen embryos that are both of yours rather than frozen eggs that are uniquely your personal gametes opens a different can of worms, and I have no idea how German law regulates those issues. 

bogart

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2015, 01:02:40 PM »

So, the success rate obviously depends on whether you are talking about the success rate of thawed ooctyes or transferred oocytes. In any case, the studies are a few years old and practices continue to improve.

I don't share any of this to dissuade you (or anyone) -- I just think the general opinion of success rates with frozen embryos tends to be a little more optimistic than the data suggest, and it's important to have an understanding of what may be in store so you can make an informed decision. It sounds like you are doing just that.


Not to split hairs, as I assume the above bolded bits are just (in effect) typos, but in case anyone less familiar with the processes involved is reading this, the order of the steps under discussion are --
1.  Surgically retrieve eggs
2.  Freeze eggs (if desired, to make delay possible)
3.  Thaw eggs (if they have been frozen)
4.  Fertilize eggs, creating embryos
5.  Freeze embryos (if desired, to make delay possible)
6.  Thaw embryos (if they have been frozen)
7.  Transfer embryos to a woman's uterus and hope that pregnancy results

(Things can go wrong at any of those stages)

To my knowledge, oocytes are never transferred (into a woman's body, with the possible exception of GIFT cycles -- gamete intrafallopian transfer, but I think those have largely fallen out of favor as a treatment option), and cryopreserving embryos (as opposed to oocytes) is something that's been done for a relatively longer time (decades, rather than years) and is relative well understood and more likely than oocyte cryopreservation to result in a pregnancy.  That is -- there are various options, with various implications and success rates, and it's easy to get them muddled in conversation on message boards like this one (but that can then generate further confusion among those not familiar with the options/terms).
« Last Edit: March 19, 2015, 01:05:16 PM by bogart »

studentdoc2

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2015, 02:20:52 PM »

So, the success rate obviously depends on whether you are talking about the success rate of thawed ooctyes or transferred oocytes. In any case, the studies are a few years old and practices continue to improve.

I don't share any of this to dissuade you (or anyone) -- I just think the general opinion of success rates with frozen embryos tends to be a little more optimistic than the data suggest, and it's important to have an understanding of what may be in store so you can make an informed decision. It sounds like you are doing just that.


Not to split hairs, as I assume the above bolded bits are just (in effect) typos, but in case anyone less familiar with the processes involved is reading this, the order of the steps under discussion are --
1.  Surgically retrieve eggs
2.  Freeze eggs (if desired, to make delay possible)
3.  Thaw eggs (if they have been frozen)
4.  Fertilize eggs, creating embryos
5.  Freeze embryos (if desired, to make delay possible)
6.  Thaw embryos (if they have been frozen)
7.  Transfer embryos to a woman's uterus and hope that pregnancy results

(Things can go wrong at any of those stages)

To my knowledge, oocytes are never transferred (into a woman's body, with the possible exception of GIFT cycles -- gamete intrafallopian transfer, but I think those have largely fallen out of favor as a treatment option), and cryopreserving embryos (as opposed to oocytes) is something that's been done for a relatively longer time (decades, rather than years) and is relative well understood and more likely than oocyte cryopreservation to result in a pregnancy.  That is -- there are various options, with various implications and success rates, and it's easy to get them muddled in conversation on message boards like this one (but that can then generate further confusion among those not familiar with the options/terms).

Yes, that was my typo mistake! The "transfer" to which I was referring was transferred embryos (from thawed ooctyes). Thanks for catching and clarifying.

mozar

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2015, 09:18:01 PM »
My mom just had to let me know (per the article she read) that freezing eggs if you are going to do it should be done between 32 and 38. I think I won't do it because I think I will try to have a baby whether I'm single or not by the time I'm 35. I hear the consultation is good because the doctor can tell you how your fertility is doing. For example I read an article about a woman who had her eggs looked at and at 32 she was almost out of eggs already, and needed to have kids now if she wanted them. I've heard that most women who go the doctor can tell them roughly how many years they have left of fertility.

acorn

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #20 on: March 20, 2015, 11:32:39 PM »
So, the success rate obviously depends on whether you are talking about the success rate of thawed ooctyes or transferred embryos. In any case, the studies are a few years old and practices continue to improve.

I don't share any of this to dissuade you (or anyone) -- I just think the general opinion of success rates with frozen oocytes tends to be a little more optimistic than the data suggest, and it's important to have an understanding of what may be in store so you can make an informed decision. It sounds like you are doing just that.

As I've said, my partner and I have already made the decision to go the adoption route (foster to adopt) for any children we have in our late 30s/early 40s. However, I am glad that social egg freezing (as opposed to medical egg freezing) is becoming an option for women, and I hope that progress continues to be made in the area.

Given how new egg freezing is, I think its effectiveness and risks are still unclear. If you have a partner and wish to delay child bearing, freezing embryos would probably be a better choice.

http://nautil.us/issue/22/slow/why-egg-freezing-is-an-impossible-choice

Quote
Still, while the ASRM approved egg freezing for medical purposes—largely for young women with cancer about to undergo sterilizing chemotherapy—the organization cautioned against its “widespread elective use to delay child bearing.” After reviewing nearly 1,000 papers, the ASRM could find only four randomized control trials that compared fresh and frozen eggs, mostly from clinics with high pregnancy rates, using eggs from young donors. Not a wide pool of clinics, or thirty-something patients. Therefore, the authors concluded, a woman should not put off having children in favor of freezing her eggs, because “there are no data to support the safety, efficacy, ethics, emotional risks and cost-effectiveness” of using egg freezing for this purpose.”

MrsCoolCat

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #21 on: March 21, 2015, 12:17:30 AM »
I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...

Me too!!!  Had to read twice I was so confused.  I freeze chicken eggs all the time when farm fresh are abundant in the Summer but never my own (haha)!

I thought the same about chicken eggs! Well, earlier today my DH already had the kid talk with me; how ironic! I actually thought it was from this post! I will be 31 soon. I've already made up my mind to have 2 kids max by 35, and that was with the husband's blessing. Everyone is different but my moment of acceptance and wanting kids literally happened January this year while watching a movie. LOL. Not like I literally wanted kids at that very moment, but that I was closer to the idea.

It literally went something like, wow Not Another Teen Movie is old. Chris Evans is still hot and Mia Kirschner is stunning! They all look great but man, how they've aged. Wait, I'm gonna age, too, and I actually don't care! That thought no longer instills a fear into me like most newly 30s women. Even before that I started cooking more and other life things/errands fell into place and became more routine where I was like, F it. I can do this. I mean no one really can juggle EVERYTHING but F it, I'm going to try! Now I just need to lose 7 lbs before I get pregnant! FYI, don't take me too seriously. I'm a sarcastic jokester. GOOD LUCK though!
« Last Edit: March 21, 2015, 12:21:52 AM by MrsCoolCat »

frugaldrummer

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #22 on: March 21, 2015, 02:50:07 PM »
To the OP, if you genuinely desire children, I recommend just trying to get pregnant now. Not only are your odds better than relying on all this technology, you also can't rely on your health in the future. And yes, plenty of women in their 30s get fibroids....also hypertension, diabetes, thyroid disease, cervical cancer.....any number of things that can cause a pregnancy to be high risk. There's a reason physicians call a first-time pregnant woman over 35 an "elderly primip".

Now, if you're really not sure if you ever want kids but just want to leave the option open and won't be that upset if it doesn't work out, that's a different scenario.

Also, when it comes to delaying children, remember that you will be older at every stage. Waking at night in your 40s rather than your 30s (trust me, you get more tired as you get older). Dealing with teen problems in your 50s. Going to graduations in your 60s. Possibly missing out on grandchildren altogether if your kids wait a similarly long time to reproduce.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #23 on: March 22, 2015, 06:04:21 AM »
Many thanks to everybody contributing, especially for the interesting links!

Since those German clinics being mentioned can (legally) only transfer three embryos per cycle, a success rate of 40% per cycle (which would not include the cells destroyed by thawing) does add up with the 'about 8-9% per egg' on my clinic's website. One reason I chose them is because they are a member of the fertiprotect network.

To those who suggested freezing embryos: that's also illegal here (yes, our laws on infertility treatment could have been written by the pope, don't get me started...). So if we do that we would need to pick another jurisdiction, somehow legally safeguard how the embryos should be treated if we split up or one of us dies and at least I would need to spend two to eight weeks there. This would be a logistical nightmare. Nevertheless, thanks for pointing out the possibility.

To frugaldrummer: i think we are pretty certain we want children - just not now. We both are about to change employers within the next year.  SO is still working his way out of a depression that has its cause in his own childhood. He's mortally afraid of being a bad father (and I love him for taking child raising seriously enough to have that fear). 'Just start now' does not feel right to both of us. We understand that freezing (or rather thawing) could fail. One thing we need to think through in the next weeks is how well we could live with that risk becoming our reality.

I do not share your general concerns with older parents. Todays 60 year olds are far healthier than the ones two generations ago and the reasonable expectation is that I am going to be an even healthier 60 year old. My general gyn told me that re my uterus and general health I can 'just forget' the trumpeted 35 watershed. And I cannot help to agree. Why should the next three years turn me into an elderly primip if the last 10 years have left me much better of than my grandmother and mother at similar ages? To me the real risk seems menopause. Which is a fairly unique thing biologically. Older mothers are common in the animal kingdom, if the individual animal in question is lucky enough to reach an advanced age. One hypothesis to explain that particularity of ours is the difficult and lifethreatening birthes we have. Evolution perhaps developed menopause to avoid rolling the dice too often and leave our still dependent offspring of earlier pregnancies motherless on a regular basis, hence the unusual fast depletion of our egg stache. Like everything associated with womens health this turned into a dogma that older woman just not should have children. Even when older fathers always have been common, even back in the days when they could not expect to live to 80.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2015, 07:54:30 AM by Lyssa »

caliq

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #24 on: March 22, 2015, 06:56:26 AM »
Just to be clear, there are serious, statistically significant risks to the baby (in terms of birth defects) correlated with advancing maternal age (and paternal age, actually).  It's not an arbitrary/unsupported 'dogma' that older women shouldn't have kids. 

Just because you're healthier than your predecessors does not mean that your eggs are.  Which, I'm assuming/hoping, is at least part of why you're thinking of freezing them now rather than rolling the dice and TTC naturally later on. 

Also, don't forget that your mother/grandmother were likely having and raising kids at your age, which could have been a huge factor in their overall healthiness ;)

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #25 on: March 22, 2015, 07:47:12 AM »
Just to be clear, there are serious, statistically significant risks to the baby (in terms of birth defects) correlated with advancing maternal age (and paternal age, actually).  It's not an arbitrary/unsupported 'dogma' that older women shouldn't have kids. 

Just because you're healthier than your predecessors does not mean that your eggs are.  Which, I'm assuming/hoping, is at least part of why you're thinking of freezing them now rather than rolling the dice and TTC naturally later on. 

Also, don't forget that your mother/grandmother were likely having and raising kids at your age, which could have been a huge factor in their overall healthiness ;)

Oh, absolutely. My paternal grandmother looked ancient by 60, died shortly after and did not get to know me or my brother. Her having 12 kids surely had a part in this...

And yes, me wanting to prevent both decline in numbers and quality of my eggs are the reason for me considering freezing. And this would remove the by far biggest part of the higher risk of birth defects.

If you know what the remaining "ethical" or "societal" issues are with a 40 year old women having children please tell me.

I just cannot consider it a coincidence that every single improvement in women's reproductive health was fought for years and sometimes decades because "ethics" and "society". The pill, the morning after pill, pain meds during birth in general, epidurals in particular, elective c-sections, safe abortions, now elective freezing (somehow no ethical issues associated with the procedure if you have cancer)....

caliq

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #26 on: March 22, 2015, 07:51:35 AM »
Just to be clear, there are serious, statistically significant risks to the baby (in terms of birth defects) correlated with advancing maternal age (and paternal age, actually).  It's not an arbitrary/unsupported 'dogma' that older women shouldn't have kids. 

Just because you're healthier than your predecessors does not mean that your eggs are.  Which, I'm assuming/hoping, is at least part of why you're thinking of freezing them now rather than rolling the dice and TTC naturally later on. 

Also, don't forget that your mother/grandmother were likely having and raising kids at your age, which could have been a huge factor in their overall healthiness ;)

Oh, absolutely. My paternal grandmother looked ancient by 60, died shortly after and did not get to know me or my brother. Her having 12 kids surely had a part in this...

And yes, me wanting to prevent both decline in numbers and quality of my eggs are the reason for me considering freezing. And this would remove the by far biggest part of the higher risk of birth defects.

If you know what the remaining "ethical" or "societal" issues are with a 40 year old women having children please tell me.

I just cannot consider it a coincidence that every single improvement in women's reproductive health was fought for years and sometimes decades because "ethics" and "society". The pill, the morning after pill, pain meds during birth in general, epidurals in particular, elective c-sections, safe abortions, now elective freezing (somehow no ethical issues associated with the procedure if you have cancer)....

Nope, I have zero issues other than the biological ones.  I totally, 100% agree with your last paragraph.  I just thought your wording was a little bit ambiguous and I've run into several people who haven't seen the charts correlating parental age and birth defects, and have irrationally insisted that it's not that big of a deal for older women to have kids because "modern medicine", so I just wanted to make sure :) 

mozar

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #27 on: March 22, 2015, 09:04:09 PM »
That's pretty sweet your gyn says you can wait. I need me one of those. For me I would prefer to be done with raising kids by my late 50's so I can move on to other things. Having to deal with teenagers in my 50's already seems less than ideal. But I hear you on your partners depression. That's the main reason I have waited. I have had severe insomnia most of my life, and the past year I have gotten serious about fixing it. I've also spent the past ten years working on my relationship with my parents. I think they're almost ready to be grandparents :-)

Daisy

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #28 on: March 22, 2015, 09:52:45 PM »
I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...

Me too!!!  Had to read twice I was so confused.  I freeze chicken eggs all the time when farm fresh are abundant in the Summer but never my own (haha)!

I thought the same about chicken eggs! Well, earlier today my DH already had the kid talk with me; how ironic! I actually thought it was from this post! I will be 31 soon. I've already made up my mind to have 2 kids max by 35, and that was with the husband's blessing. Everyone is different but my moment of acceptance and wanting kids literally happened January this year while watching a movie. LOL. Not like I literally wanted kids at that very moment, but that I was closer to the idea.

It literally went something like, wow Not Another Teen Movie is old. Chris Evans is still hot and Mia Kirschner is stunning! They all look great but man, how they've aged. Wait, I'm gonna age, too, and I actually don't care! That thought no longer instills a fear into me like most newly 30s women. Even before that I started cooking more and other life things/errands fell into place and became more routine where I was like, F it. I can do this. I mean no one really can juggle EVERYTHING but F it, I'm going to try! Now I just need to lose 7 lbs before I get pregnant! FYI, don't take me too seriously. I'm a sarcastic jokester. GOOD LUCK though!

I thought the same thing that this topic was about freezing chicken eggs.

I recently went on a trip and was so proud I saved money on breakfast by grocery shopping instead of eating at the hotel buffett as some others did. I had put the room's tiny refrigerator accidentally too cold the first night and everything froze. I was very worried about my eggs freezing but after they thawed out they were still worthy of some microwave scrambled eggs.

I came here to report my accidental success in freezing eggs and share the great news.

I don't mean to diminish the deep emotional stuff going on in this thread though. I've got no direct knowledge on freezing human eggs. Carry on...

Credaholic

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #29 on: March 22, 2015, 10:42:59 PM »
I was an egg donor 7 times in my early twenties, so I have a lot of experience with the actual process of egg retrieval and I found it to be no big deal. I've also heard that in a few big corporations, freezing eggs is now being offered as a benefit in order to maintain women in the work place as they establish their careers. I completely agree that life these days supports becoming parents later. The only problem with that plan is that our fertile window hasn't also advanced. This is the perfect (albeit "bionic") way of taking back control over that part of our biology. I say go for it if the cost won't push you off your goal path!

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #30 on: March 25, 2015, 04:52:20 AM »
Back for reporting after consultation:

- seems that my fertility is about average for my age ('seems' because I'm still waiting for the AMH result, antral follical count was fine)

- late twenties to early thirties is the right age for the procedure. Most patients wait too long and face very poor chances of success

- procedure is not cheap but not as expensive as in the US, about 3000 EUR per cycle

- doc recommends 12-15 eggs per child one would like to have, I think I'm aiming for 25-30, with a bit of luck two cycles could accomplish that, I don't think I want to do more than three

- apparently the university of youtube is the place to learn how to properly inject yourself with hormones and Germans can save about a third of the costs by using French pharmacies (finally something Mustachian about the whole thing :-) )

- I already received everything I need if and when I want to initiate a cycle, including a treatment plan, one cycle takes about two weeks

I've decided to go ahead with it this summer. Before starting the hormone treatment I'm planning to live extra healthy and take some supplements in order to produce good quality eggs (apart from the time your mother was pregnant with you, the two to four month before ovulation determine the quality of a matured egg)

I'll come back to tell how it went. For now I'm just hoping that it will be as easy on my body as it was for Credaholic.

One benefit this whole thing already yielded is my increased knowledge of my body and reproductive issues in general. I've always considered myself fairly educated in that regard but as it turns out there is a lot of knowledge that I did not have and that every woman could benefit from.

If one considers freezing or not, imho any woman could benefit from learning more about how -exactly- her body works and from a certain age (think mid twenties) what her antral follical count and likely onset of menopause is. Like one poster mentioned above: there are cases of 31-33 old woman who already have almost no reserve left.

Thanks again to everybody contributing!
« Last Edit: March 25, 2015, 07:01:20 AM by Lyssa »

dragoncar

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #31 on: March 25, 2015, 12:37:56 PM »
Remember, your eggs are not the only thing that has issues with age. Your uterus could become less "cooperative" with age. Google fibroids if you aren't familiar with them already. If you go that route you may end up needing a surrogate depending on how your lady bits age.

Better to get pregnant now and freeze the child.

MrsCoolCat

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #32 on: March 25, 2015, 04:46:04 PM »
Better to get pregnant now and freeze the child.

LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!

mohawkbrah

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #33 on: March 26, 2015, 04:55:20 AM »
im not a women but here's my thought process.



i can't imagine freezing eggs then having them born later is not going to have side effects. Child will most likely have higher chances of birth defects and disabilities. Some food for thought. I wouldn't agree with it if my partner wanted to do that. too much risk. maybe adopt?

probably going to get a lot of heat from the women for laying out my opinion but there it is.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #34 on: March 26, 2015, 06:29:57 AM »
im not a women but here's my thought process.



i can't imagine freezing eggs then having them born later is not going to have side effects. Child will most likely have higher chances of birth defects and disabilities. Some food for thought. I wouldn't agree with it if my partner wanted to do that. too much risk. maybe adopt?

probably going to get a lot of heat from the women for laying out my opinion but there it is.

No heat at all. If there wouldn't be two decades of experience with cancer patients I would share your concern. The children born of those eggs subjected to slow-freezing had no higher risk of birth defects. Either the eggs got destroyed, did not fertilise or produced pretty average children. Why should the gentler freezing method now available to all women be more risky?

dragoncar

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #35 on: March 26, 2015, 11:22:03 AM »
I like the idea of adoption too.  Biggest issue with freezing eggs is the expense involved (plus ivf right?). Anyone know how the cost compares to adoption?

misschedda

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #36 on: March 26, 2015, 11:48:25 AM »
Adoption can be very expensive ($25k+) or virtually free, depending on the process and amount of uncertainty you choose.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #37 on: March 26, 2015, 12:06:55 PM »
I like the idea of adoption too.  Biggest issue with freezing eggs is the expense involved (plus ivf right?). Anyone know how the cost compares to adoption?

Adoption is not on the table for us because in Germany (speaking for adoptions through the state agencies) you stand no chance as an older couple anyway (the inofficial limit is 60 years of age combined for both partners) and they also require a stay-at-home parent (in effect a stay-at-home mom). They also do not consider it necessary telling you too much about the biological mother of and history of your child and potential issues it might have. We don't want to go through shady agencies working with Russian or Indian orphanages either.

I write this as someone who thought for years about being an adoptive parent. I'm not willing to do it under these circumstances.

Fostering would be even worse because as soon as a kid would tell us any of the stories that usually lead to fostering, me and/or SO could end up in prison...
« Last Edit: March 26, 2015, 12:34:52 PM by Lyssa »

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #38 on: March 26, 2015, 12:51:17 PM »
Biggest issue with freezing eggs is the expense involved (plus ivf right?).

Yes it's not cheap. But not more than a small newish car is and I never bought one of those...

Ivf will be a few years down the line (if at all, since of course one still tries to conceive in the regular fashion first, doc told me that a lot of his patients had their first kid naturally around 35-38 but struggle to get pregnant again 2 years later)0, we hope to be FI by then so anything up to say 50,000 would be quite managable. Anything more expensive would probably be too dreadful anyways. I neither want to do endless rounds of retrievals nor endless rounds of failed implantations and/or misscarriages.

I'm prepared to take some pain now and some later to live life according to my and my partner's terms. But there is a limit to everything and I'm not in the either I have children or I'll be miserable for the rest of my life camp.

If one is, one should probably not resort to hedging bets in this fashion but structure one's life around having children late 20ies early 30ies.

Señora Savings

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #39 on: March 26, 2015, 10:01:23 PM »
To frugaldrummer: i think we are pretty certain we want children - just not now. We both are about to change employers within the next year.  SO is still working his way out of a depression that has its cause in his own childhood. He's mortally afraid of being a bad father (and I love him for taking child raising seriously enough to have that fear). 'Just start now' does not feel right to both of us. We understand that freezing (or rather thawing) could fail. One thing we need to think through in the next weeks is how well we could live with that risk becoming our reality.

I just want to throw in my observation of kids growing up.  The ones that have developmental issues (and I make no assumptions that freezing increases risk) are, on the whole, happier than the ones who have problems with their parents.  So I think that waiting until you're ready for kids is a great choice for you and for the possible future kids.

Good luck!  It sounds like this has been a good experience for you.

mbl

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #40 on: March 27, 2015, 09:11:01 AM »
Your partner's depression would be more of a concern  as I read your posts.   

I would consider more than anything, what effect having children will have on someone who battles depression.   Not wanting to have children now is understandable and it seems that you are fully aware of the risks of waiting.     Obviously going through pregnancy, delivery,  nurturing an infant and all the rest of that which is required of parents with children is very demanding.

Credaholic

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #41 on: April 07, 2015, 04:56:49 PM »
I'll come back to tell how it went. For now I'm just hoping that it will be as easy on my body as it was for Credaholic.

I just read back in my records, and of the 7 times I donated I only had an issue (hyperstimulation) once. It was with a clinic that used a different med protocol, and I specifically told them that I felt I was stimming too quickly (granted I had my previous experiences so that I was able to make this semi-educated call), but they maintained my dosage. I never went back there! It was an uncomfortable week following procedure, but obviously not enough to scare me off doing it again. The med protocol that worked very well for me with little to no side effects was Lupron. Granted this was many years ago and I have no idea what has changed, but thought I'd share in case it's helpful for you. I refused to go to any clinics not using Lupron after that :)

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #42 on: August 12, 2015, 02:37:36 AM »
Update: I've started my first freezing cycle about a week ago. Seems I can expect to harvest about a dozen eggs. So far, side effects have been mild and bearable.

Drugs have been EUR 1400 in total (sourced through French pharmacy).
« Last Edit: August 12, 2015, 02:47:32 AM by Lyssa »

okits

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #43 on: August 12, 2015, 07:30:11 PM »
Glad the process has not been too uncomfortable!  Wishing you success with this.

totoro

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #44 on: August 12, 2015, 07:38:35 PM »
Excellent news.  And hell yes! to your original question.  Had I done this in my 30s I would have gone for IVF later.  I didn't read all the posts all the way down so maybe I'm missing some key info but I have researched all the options at 40 and using my own 30 year old eggs would have been my strong preference.  Not an option because it wasn't a well-known or affordable thing to freeze your eggs when I was 30.  Very happy it is for you.

bsmith

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #45 on: August 12, 2015, 07:45:06 PM »
Quote
Quote from: MrsCoolCat on March 21, 2015, 12:17:30 AM

    Quote from: lakemom on March 18, 2015, 12:30:13 PM

        Quote from: APowers on March 18, 2015, 10:22:30 AM

            I came here thinking it was a topic about how to save on groceries...


        Me too!!!  Had to read twice I was so confused.  I freeze chicken eggs all the time when farm fresh are abundant in the Summer but never my own (haha)!


    I thought the same about chicken eggs! Well, earlier today my DH already had the kid talk with me; how ironic! I actually thought it was from this post! I will be 31 soon. I've already made up my mind to have 2 kids max by 35, and that was with the husband's blessing. Everyone is different but my moment of acceptance and wanting kids literally happened January this year while watching a movie. LOL. Not like I literally wanted kids at that very moment, but that I was closer to the idea.

    It literally went something like, wow Not Another Teen Movie is old. Chris Evans is still hot and Mia Kirschner is stunning! They all look great but man, how they've aged. Wait, I'm gonna age, too, and I actually don't care! That thought no longer instills a fear into me like most newly 30s women. Even before that I started cooking more and other life things/errands fell into place and became more routine where I was like, F it. I can do this. I mean no one really can juggle EVERYTHING but F it, I'm going to try! Now I just need to lose 7 lbs before I get pregnant! FYI, don't take me too seriously. I'm a sarcastic jokester. GOOD LUCK though!


I thought the same thing that this topic was about freezing chicken eggs.

I recently went on a trip and was so proud I saved money on breakfast by grocery shopping instead of eating at the hotel buffett as some others did. I had put the room's tiny refrigerator accidentally too cold the first night and everything froze. I was very worried about my eggs freezing but after they thawed out they were still worthy of some microwave scrambled eggs.

I came here to report my accidental success in freezing eggs and share the great news.

I don't mean to diminish the deep emotional stuff going on in this thread though. I've got no direct knowledge on freezing human eggs. Carry on..


Any particular protips on freezing eggs? I was thinking about this at Sam's yesterday,  since the price has gone up and is projected to go up more.

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #46 on: August 13, 2015, 02:55:56 AM »
Glad the process has not been too uncomfortable!  Wishing you success with this.

Thanks!

If it is of interest to anybody: I'm using Gonal F and Cetrotide as an antagonist. "Trigger" is going to be Decapeptyl.

Youtube has been great for learning how to inject myself (not nearly as bad as expected. I could use Gonal pens while sleepwalking by now. Cetrotide syringes are a bit trickier but I've only had one of those and hope to improve my skills ;-).

Lyssa

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #47 on: August 13, 2015, 03:01:48 AM »
Excellent news.  And hell yes! to your original question.  Had I done this in my 30s I would have gone for IVF later.  I didn't read all the posts all the way down so maybe I'm missing some key info but I have researched all the options at 40 and using my own 30 year old eggs would have been my strong preference.  Not an option because it wasn't a well-known or affordable thing to freeze your eggs when I was 30.  Very happy it is for you.

That's what I'm thinking... Sure, it is going to be even better for the now 20 year olds, when the technology has been tried and tested, but what a great thing to be in the first generation for which this is even a possibility!

If you don't mind me asking (if you do, just tell me): Have you had a child at or past 40 and if yes, how has the pregnancy been going?

lakemom

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #48 on: August 13, 2015, 05:11:36 AM »
Quote


Any particular protips on freezing eggs? I was thinking about this at Sam's yesterday,  since the price has gone up and is projected to go up more.

What I do is crack all the eggs into a bowl, mix them up pretty good, then measure 1/4C. of beaten egg into muffin tins, freeze.  Once frozen I put them all into a ziplock bag.  If you have a frost free freezer (freeze, thaw cycle) I'd separate them with a piece of wax paper between the discs.  Use the frozen eggs (they thaw pretty quick) for breakfast or in baking.  For baking I just take the eggs out a couple hours ahead and let thaw but for breakfast, if I didn't take some out the night before, I just toss right into the pan they thaw and cook just fine.

lakemom

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Re: Freezing eggs - has anybody done it?
« Reply #49 on: August 13, 2015, 05:16:04 AM »
Excellent news.  And hell yes! to your original question.  Had I done this in my 30s I would have gone for IVF later.  I didn't read all the posts all the way down so maybe I'm missing some key info but I have researched all the options at 40 and using my own 30 year old eggs would have been my strong preference.  Not an option because it wasn't a well-known or affordable thing to freeze your eggs when I was 30.  Very happy it is for you.

That's what I'm thinking... Sure, it is going to be even better for the now 20 year olds, when the technology has been tried and tested, but what a great thing to be in the first generation for which this is even a possibility!

If you don't mind me asking (if you do, just tell me): Have you had a child at or past 40 and if yes, how has the pregnancy been going?

My youngest was born when I was 42 (we have 6 over a 21 year span) and the pg was essentially no different than the other pg's with the exception I had less energy.  But was that because I was 42 or because I was busy with 5 other kids?  I've never successfully answered that question in my head and she's 8.5 now.