Frozen egg transfers are a successful way to achieve pregnancy. Following a fresh in vitro fertilization cycle embryos may be frozen for a number of reasons. Viable embryos that are not used and left over from a fresh transfer would be frozen for subsequent FET cycles. It is possible to have more than one pregnancy using embryos from one IVF cycle. Genetic testing is another reason embryos may be frozen. When genetic testing is performed, embryos are grown to day 5 and then biopsied. Since genetic testing requires a period of time to be done and reported back, those embryos are frozen. When an IVF cycle leads to hyperstimulation, the ovaries become overwhelmed and hormones levels are higher than planned. In those situations, embryos are frozen and used later in frozen embryo transfers once hyperstimulation is under control.
Fertility issues can interfere with your attempts to get pregnant and expand your family, and both men and women are equally at risk for fertility problems. The process of freezing your eggs is an increasingly common choice, thanks to advanced reproductive technology (ART) and the use of vitrification. Vitrification is a flash or fast-freeze technology that is used to preserve embryos and success rates using frozen embryos is comparable to using fresh embryos.
When it comes to the benefits of a frozen embryo transfer, it requires less expense than a fresh, stimulated cycle. Not only are there less visits to monitor with a frozen embryo transfer, but there is less need for medication to prepare the uterus for the embryo implantation, and because there’s no need for egg retrieval, you don’t need anesthesia.
A frozen egg transfer cycle is oftentimes less stressful for a woman than undergoing a fresh cycle, as the original fresh cycle already took into account the stimulation response, the developing egg and the growth of the embryo.
FET also lessens your risk of ovarian hyperstimulation or OHSS (where hormone medication results in swollen and painful ovaries). With FET you don’t have to go through the stress of egg retrieval. Another benefit of a FET is that if you or your partner are at risk of passing on certain genetic conditions, genetic testing can be done that will allow for the transplanting of healthy embryos.
Frozen embryo transfers have fewer cycle cancellations and you can choose the date of your transfer months beforehand. Since you can freeze your embryos indefinitely, even if you’ve had an unsuccessful fresh transfer cycle if you froze the remaining embryos they can be used the next time you want to become pregnant. And, if you did conceive a child from a fresh embryo transfer, you can use the frozen embryo’s now to conceive a sibling.
FET Success Rate
These days, a frozen embryo cycle has much the same success rate as a fresh IVF cycle, and in fact, in some cases even higher since the lining of the uterus can be optimized before the implantation. Both cycles rely on a woman’s age and the condition of her uterine lining. The success rate for a woman who is age 35 or younger is around 60 percent for each transfer but it drops as the age increases.
If you are experiencing fertility issues and would like to learn more about IVF and FET cycles give our Idaho Fertility Center team a call at (208) 529-2019. We would be happy to schedule a consultation for you with one of our board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologists in Idaho Falls, Idaho, and help you on your conception journey.