You are a working woman, in your 30’s, your next big promotion is just around the corner, everything is as you had dreamed but somewhere in the back of your mind, there is a teeny-weeny concern about balancing your age and motherhood. You know you want to be a mother and have an ideal family but JUST NOT NOW. Are you wondering if there is any way that lets you balance both? Here is the middle path that you always wanted – egg freezing for working women.
At The Crossroads: Career Or Pregnancy?
Many career women have stood at this crossroads in their life: get pregnant and leave her career that she had worked so hard for, or focus on her career now and postpone pregnancy. Some decide to postpone their pregnancy a little later in their life, but have to accept the harsh fact that her chances of getting pregnant will become lesser as she ages.
It is totally unfair to ask a woman to choose between the two most important things in her life. But, with the development of technology, career-focused women have a new choice now which will help them to actually ‘plan their pregnancy’ practically.
Egg Freezing To The Rescue
The concept of egg freezing has been around in the past few years in other countries but is yet to become popular in India. Generally, egg freezing is being done for women with acute diseases like cancer before their treatments such as chemotherapy that has higher probability to affect their fertility.
But egg freezing can also be used by career women who want to focus on their career. They can plan when they want to get pregnant in the future and can also wholeheartedly focus on their career now without feeling guilty about reducing their chances of pregnancy.
Also, saving up their eggs when they are healthy is a good idea to avoid passing any other illness that may crop up later in their lives. This gives them additional time to plan their family, maybe save up more to welcome their baby into this world!
What Is The Process Of Egg Freezing?
The process of egg freezing is pretty much the same as the initial phase of IVF. Initially, a fertility specialist will analyze your reproductive health and will recommend pills to bypass the menstrual cycle.
You will be given rounds of hormone injections to stimulate the ovaries for about one to two weeks. You will need to make regular visits to the fertility clinic to check the healthiness of the ovaries. When the eggs are seen to be mature enough, the egg is retrieved by using a needle inserted with the help of ultrasound and stored safely.
Some Commonly Asked Questions About Egg Freezing
How Many Eggs Should I Freeze?
There is no definite number or process to decide the number of eggs that need to be frozen. And not all the eggs you freeze will be usable after some years when you wish to use them. Therefore, based on your health and the success rates, the doctors may recommend anywhere from 10 to 30 eggs to be frozen. There have been reports that freezing more than 8 eggs can double the chances of pregnancy, hence you should consult with your doctor about your future plans and decide the number of eggs you want to freeze.
How long can my eggs stay frozen?
Again, there is no guideline regarding the duration the eggs can be frozen. Although it is better to get pregnant before the age of 35, there have been instances of women delivering healthy babies with eggs frozen for 7 to 10 years. It majorly depends on the healthiness of the eggs and is attributed to the present healthiness of the woman.
What is the success rate for pregnancy with frozen eggs?
Though the success of egg freezing is not high, a woman who has eggs frozen at the age of 30 have a higher success rate than when she tries for pregnancy at 35. For women who store more than 8 eggs, the chances of getting pregnant are 46%.
Who can go for Egg Freezing?
Egg freezing can be used for many purposes:
- Any woman who wishes to plan pregnancy a little later
- Woman who unfortunately have to go through cancer or any other such treatment that affects their fertility
- Women who go through multiple frozen IVF cycles can freeze eggs and use it for subsequent cycles at the reduced cost
What is the cost of egg freezing?
Unfortunately, the cost for egg freezing in India is high. On an average, it costs Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 15,000 per month to freeze eggs although some clinics offer far lesser cost on a yearly basis. In addition to this, the process of placing the eggs back costs around Rs. 1,50,000.
What can I do with the unused healthy eggs?
If you have healthy eggs left, you can choose to donate it anonymously, or you also have the option of having it.
The Role Of Corporate Offices
Many working women have been seeing this option as a blessing with a few major corporations from around the world officially offering their support for egg freezing for their employees. Facebook offers to pay up to $20,000 to support their employees who prefer to opt for egg freezing. Apple offers perks to its staff in the US and has an extended policy for egg storage as a part of its support policy for infertility treatments. This comes at the stage when there were reports of very few senior women in the corporate world and these companies have been trying to encourage and retain their women talent force by offering egg freezing facilities from out of the company’ pocket.
Due to the higher costs involved in egg freezing, a normal middle-aged woman will not be able to afford to freeze her eggs. Hence to retain their women employees, companies in India too can come up with policies, like the ones Facebook and Apple did, or have tie-ups with some clinics to offer egg freezing facilities at a discount. This would definitely help the women to focus on her career in the present and will also help the company in retaining their talents.
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