The latest in fertility news: Why you should choose freeze all IVF cycles
Over the decades, assisted reproductive technology has continued to change and evolve, especially in the area of in vitro fertilization (IVF). At IVFMD, we provide our patients with the highest level of care and the very latest advances to maximize the chance of success with IVF treatment. Recently, we have seen a shift toward freeze all IVF cycles rather than fresh embryo cycles.
Reviewing the history of IVF
In a traditional IVF cycle, the patient’s eggs are retrieved, fertilized, and grow into embryos; five days later, one or two of the highest grade embryos are transferred into the uterus. In a freeze all IVF cycle, all embryos of high quality are flash frozen through a quick freezing process called vitrification for future transfer.
Reasons to consider choosing a freeze all IVF cycle
Until recently, fresh cycles were thought to produce better chances for a positive outcome. Over the last several years, technological advances have improved both freezing and thawing, making frozen cycles as good as – or better than – fresh cycles.
We may recommend freeze all IVF cycles for certain situations.
- To receive necessary medical treatment. For those who need to undergo chemotherapy or infusion therapy that may negatively impact fertility, frozen embryos can be stored and used after treatment.
- To prevent possible ovarian overstimulation. Some patients develop many follicles and have high estradiol levels, which can increase the odds of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Using a frozen embryo and making the transfer after the ovaries have returned to normal reduces the risks.
- To allow for preimplantation genetic testing. When one or both partners have a risk for passing on certain genetic diseases like cystic fibrosis or sickle cell anemia, freeze all IVF cycles allow time for testing. Additionally, patients may want PGS to check for chromosomal abnormalities, and frozen embryo cycles afford them that opportunity.
In addition, the main benefit of a freeze all IVF cycle is that it provides a more favorable uterine environment for the embryo. In a fresh cycle, high levels of hormones and medications can make the uterine lining less receptive to the embryo. In contrast, in a frozen embryo transfer cycle, the uterine lining is closer to that of a natural cycle and is therefore more likely to allow implantation. An embryo would have a higher rate of implantation in a frozen transfer cycle than in a fresh transfer cycle.
At IVFMD, we are committed to offering patients top-notch fertility treatment. Contact us for more information about freeze all IVF cycles, or to schedule an appointment in our Irving or Arlington offices.