Women who wish to delay pregnancy might want to consider freezing their eggs.
Oocyte cryopreservation, or egg freezing, is the method by which unfertilized eggs are harvested from ovaries, frozen, and stored for later use. The eggs can then be thawed for later use when a woman wishes.
This process is typically used for women who have medical conditions or illnesses affecting fertility, are undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF), or simply wish to become pregnant at a later date.
The pricing for freezing eggs varies depending on the clinic and location. However, the cost for the procedure alone — not including storage fees — usually ranges between $5,000 and $10,000 per cycle, according to Modern Fertility.
Texas is one of 19 states that require insurance companies to supply coverage for infertility treatments.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) conducted a study and concluded that while fertility in women decreases significantly at age 32, it decreases rapidly after age 37.
The study observed that the percentage of IVF cycles that resulted in live births was 41.5% in women younger than 35 years, 31.9% in women aged 35–37, 22.1% in women aged 38–40, 12.4% in women aged 41–42, 5% in women aged 43–44, and 1% for women older than 44.
Dr. Julian Escobar of Conceive Fertility Center in Dallas told NBC News that freezing eggs used to be experimental and reserved for women with cancer or other illnesses that affected fertility. Now, the technology has been simplified to appeal to women who wish to delay pregnancy to a later date in their lives.
“Women go to college. They don’t have a baby early on. They don’t get married early on. They want a good job. They’re professional,” said Escobar. “They can get married for the right reasons later on, [are] maybe now hitting their 30s, then all of a sudden, you start seeing that their fertility declines after age 35.”
Actress Jennifer Aniston said in an interview with Allure that she had tried to start a family years ago but had encountered difficulties. The 53-year-old actress said she had difficulty taking measures such as IVF fertility treatments while under the spotlight.
“I would’ve given anything if someone had said to me, ‘Freeze your eggs. Do yourself a favor.’ You just don’t think it. So here I am today,” Aniston said in the interview. “The ship has sailed.”