Embryo Freezing (Vitrification) | Dr. Hakan Özörnek

Embryo Freezing (Vitrification)

What is cryopreservation?

Cryopreservation, also known as "kryo," is the process of freezing and storing embryos, the cellular structures formed by the fertilization of sperm and egg.

Who is it applied to?

When a surplus of high-quality embryos is obtained during in vitro fertilization (IVF), the unused embryos are frozen and stored for future use. These embryos can be thawed and used in subsequent attempts when needed. For this purpose, at least two frozen embryos should be available for one attempt. With the consent of the couple, these embryos can be stored in liquid nitrogen for up to five years, as per Turkish regulations. In the event of divorce or the death of one of the partners, the embryo freezing agreement is considered automatically void, and the embryos will be discarded.

What are the advantages?

The cryopreservation process is cost-effective. Since ready-to-use embryos are available, there is no need to stimulate the ovaries with medications or collect eggs again, halving the treatment cost. It is less stressful for the patient, as there is no risk of failure to obtain eggs or embryos, and there is no surgical stress. Patient compliance with treatment is easier, and the side effects of treatment are reduced.

How is the cryo cycle implemented?

Treatment involves the use of tablets containing estrogen hormone. This hormone ensures the healthy development of the endometrial lining where the embryo will implant. When the endometrium reaches the appropriate thickness, embryos are thawed and transferred. In some cases, the cryo cycle can be applied during the natural menstrual cycle.

Are there any issues with babies born through cryopreservation?

Studies have shown no increased risk of anomalies in babies born through this method.

What is the success rate?

With current technology (vitrification), 95% of frozen embryos can be successfully thawed, and the pregnancy rate is between 30-40%.

Cryopreservation agreement form information

After the IVF/ICSI treatment, any excess embryos (not transferred) are frozen and stored for possible future treatments with your permission. A fee is charged for the freezing process and subsequent storage. Embryos are stored as long as you remain married and for a maximum of five years with your consent. Legally, you must apply to our clinic annually with a petition to continue storing the embryos. If no application is made at the end of one year, a one-month waiting period is observed, and the embryos are legally destroyed. Destruction is supervised by an authorized health department official.

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