Fertility preservation is the process of freezing the eggs, sperm, embryos or reproductive tissue so they can be used in the future to allow you to have a biological child.
Aggressive treatments such as chemo and radiotherapy can be detrimental to your fertility and cancer patients, especially if they are children or young adults, are advised to consider cryopreservation of their gametes, if they want to have children in the future.
As late childbearing becomes common, age is also one of the more common reasons for women to opt for egg freezing and preserve their reproductive potential for future. A woman has around a million eggs at birth but only a few hundred of those eggs may be used during her reproductive years.
Female fertility is declines sharply after the mid-30s as both the number and quality of eggs is reduced with advancing age.
Other reasons to consider fertility preservation are:
Surgical removal of reproductive organs: Removal of ovaries in women and testes in men will prevent them from having children in future unless they have frozen and preserved their gametes.
Autoimmune diseases: The risk of infertility is higher in women with diseases like lupus erythematosus, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and cryopreservation of eggs is recommended if you’re having trouble conceiving and are undergoing treatment.
Sex change: Transgenders and people considering sex change operation can also opt for preservation of their gametes to have children in the future, although they might also need to hire a surrogate later to have a baby.