Revealing the Facts About Freezing Reproductive Material with Cryoport Systems
The advancements in reproductive medicine have revolutionized fertility practices and provided hope and new possibilities for intended parents seeking to conceive. Additional technologies in cryopreservation have opened the door to transporting reproductive material around the world, allowing for fertility procedures to take place almost anywhere. However, several myths and misconceptions surrounding the use and storage of these reproductive materials can cause uncertainty in one’s fertility journey.
Cryoport Systems is the leader in supply chain management for biological materials for the life sciences. With facilities located both domestically within the U.S. and abroad, we have a deep knowledge of storing and shipping reproductive material. To help add certainty into your fertility journey, let’s break down four common myths of freezing and storing biological material and reveal the facts behind them.
Myth: It’s harder to achieve a viable pregnancy with a frozen embryo.
Fact: Embryo transfer using thawed frozen embryos is now a standard practice in fertility treatments.
There isn’t much of a difference in the success rate between the two. In fact, the chances of a successful pregnancy using frozen embryos are similar to, if not better than, using fresh embryos. Advances in freezing techniques and technologies have significantly improved the survival rates and viability of thawed embryos. According to Pacific Fertility Center Los Angeles, women under the age of 35 who freeze 10-20 eggs have a 70-90% chance of at least one live birth, and that rate increases to 90% if they undergo another cycle and increase the number of eggs frozen to 20.
Myth: Frozen embryos can’t be stored for long.
Fact: Embryos can be stored for extended periods of time without compromising their integrity.
Embryos may be frozen indefinitely without risking the integrity of the cells. John Hopkins Medicine states that the standard storage period is usually around 10 years. While a decade is the standard storage period, this limitation is primarily due to cost considerations and changes in individual fertility needs rather than the viability of the embryos themselves. In certain circumstances, embryos can be stored for up to 55 years without any adverse effects on their quality.
Myth: Embryos that have been frozen are of inferior quality to fresh embryos.
Fact: The freezing process does not compromise the quality of embryos.
Only the highest quality embryos are selected for freezing, ensuring that they can successfully endure the freeze-thaw cycle. Extensive research and advancements in cryopreservation techniques have made it possible to preserve embryos with exceptional viability. The resulting babies born from frozen embryos are no different from those conceived naturally or through other fertility treatments.
Myth: You have no control over what happens to your embryos.
Fact: As the owners of the frozen embryos, you have complete control over their fate.
Before storage, you will sign consent forms that outline the duration of storage. These forms will specify your preferences regarding the use of the embryos and address scenarios where you or your partner may become incapacitated. You have the authority to decide whether the embryos are to be used exclusively for your treatment, donated to another couple, or utilized for research purposes. All in all, the fate of your embryos remains with you throughout the entire process.
By dispelling these four common myths surrounding freezing and storing reproductive material, Cryoport Systems hopes to provide clarity and reassurance to individuals and couples exploring fertility options. With Cryoport Systems’ comprehensive supply chain management abilities, intended parents can confidently store and ship their reproductive materials domestically and internationally with certainty that their materials will be handled with the utmost care and professionalism. For more information about how Cryoport Systems can support your fertility journey, check out our reproductive medicine website.