Kishori IVF


Embryo Freezing

Embryo freezing, also known as cryopreservation, involves freezing and storing fertilized eggs for future use. This technique is commonly employed alongside fertility treatments like in vitro fertilization (IVF). Additionally, it serves as a method for preserving fertility and enhancing the chances of future pregnancy. Individuals undergoing cancer treatment or undergoing gender transition are examples of those who may benefit from this option.


Embryo freezing, also known as embryo cryopreservation, is a technique utilized to freeze and store embryos for future use. An embryo is formed when an egg is fertilized by sperm, and this process serves as a valuable resource for individuals or couples facing fertility challenges.

Why Freeze Embryos?

Embryo freezing is commonly employed following fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). These procedures may result in surplus embryos, which can be frozen and stored for various reasons, including:

  • Delaying or postponing embryo implantation into the uterus after fertilization.
  • Opting to defer IVF treatment to a later date.
  • Preparing for potential future attempts at fertility treatment.
  • Choosing to donate unused embryos for research or to other individuals undergoing fertility treatment.

Additionally, embryo freezing serves as a means of fertility preservation, particularly for individuals facing medical treatments like chemotherapy or radiation therapy, which may compromise their fertility. This includes scenarios such as cancer patients and transgender individuals undergoing hormone therapy or gender affirmation surgery.

Difference Between Egg and Embryo Freezing

Embryo cryopreservation involves freezing fertilized eggs, while egg freezing pertains to the freezing of unfertilized eggs. Both methods offer options for preserving fertility, albeit at different stages of reproductive development.

Is Embryo Freezing Beneficial?

The decision to freeze embryos is multifaceted and involves considerations such as cost, ethical implications, and individual circumstances. While embryo freezing provides a valuable reproductive option, it is essential to weigh these factors along with personal preferences and medical advice.

Does Freezing Affect Embryos?

Embryo freezing and subsequent thawing processes carry the risk of damaging embryos. While advancements in cryopreservation techniques have improved success rates, there remains a possibility of reduced viability or survival of embryos during freezing and thawing procedures.

Procedure Details

Preparation for Embryo Cryopreservation

Before proceeding with embryo freezing, individuals or couples are required to provide informed consent, which includes specifying details such as the number of embryos to be frozen, storage duration, and disposition instructions. Healthcare providers assist in determining the optimal embryonic stage for freezing, which may include the cleavage or blastocyst stage.

Embryo Cryopreservation Process

Embryo freezing involves two primary methods: vitrification and slow freezing. In vitrification, embryos are treated with a cryoprotective agent and rapidly frozen in liquid nitrogen. Alternatively, slow freezing gradually reduces embryo temperature before storage in liquid nitrogen. Embryos are stored in labeled containers and maintain their biological age throughout the freezing period.

Post-Freezing Protocol

When embryos are required for future use, they undergo thawing and preparation procedures before implantation into the uterus. This typically involves gradual warming, removal of cryoprotective agents, and subsequent transfer into the uterus by a fertility specialist.

Risks and Benefits

Advantages of Embryo Cryopreservation

Embryo freezing offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Facilitating pregnancy at a later stage in life.
  • Preserving fertility during medical treatments or life circumstances that may affect reproductive health.
  • Providing options for individuals without partners or facing infertility challenges.

Potential Risks and Complications

While embryo cryopreservation is generally safe, potential risks include:

  • Damage to embryos during freezing or thawing processes.
  • Variability in pregnancy success rates upon embryo implantation.
  • Possibility of medical complications such as multiple births and pregnancy-related issues.

Recovery and Outlook

Success of Frozen Embryo Transfer

Frozen embryo transfer, where thawed embryos are implanted into the uterus, offers promising success rates. However, outcomes depend on factors such as overall health, age, and fertility history.

Changing Your Mind

Individuals have the right to alter their decisions regarding embryo freezing at any stage of the process. Legal and ethical considerations dictate appropriate procedures in such cases.

Disposition of Unused Embryos

Unused embryos may be discarded, donated for research or educational purposes, or contributed to other individuals seeking fertility assistance. Each option carries its own ethical implications and legal requirements.

Embryo freezing presents a valuable reproductive option for individuals or couples navigating fertility challenges. It is essential to consult with healthcare providers to explore the suitability of this approach and address any questions or concerns.

"A note from Kishori IVF Clinic"

Embryo freezing, also known as cryopreservation, involves freezing and storing fertilized eggs for future use, offering individuals the opportunity to preserve fertility and explore pregnancy options later in life. If you’re contemplating embryo cryopreservation, it’s advisable to consult with your primary care provider, gynecologist, or fertility specialist.