Reproductive Health and Fertility Treatment News from ASRM
What's in the news about reproductive health and fertility treatment?
It's that time of the year where ASRM (American Society for Reproductive Medicine) meets. Many, if not most, of the top professionals in the field of reproductive endocrinology meet and present papers, share results and much, much more.
I'm just going to look at a small piece from the meeting, as reported by NPR (National Public Radio) in "Freezing Eggs To Make Babies Later Moves Toward Mainstream". There will be more to come during the week about the breakthroughs in reproductive medicine. Of that, there is no doubt.
Newsworthy Egg Freezing Updates
Egg freezing has been around for a while. As recently as 2008, when reviewed by ASRM, it was still considered experimental. Simply put, in 2008, there was not enough research or results to consider the procedure a "clinically viable technique".
That has changed. One of the most exciting things to have come from the annual meeting of ASRM so far is that egg freezing is no longer going to carry the stigma of being experimental.
This is not simply about semantics.
About Fertility Preservation and Egg Freezing
Mainly egg freezing has been used in fertility preservation situations. Situations such as when a woman is going to undergo medical treatment, often cancer treatment, that would or could damage her eggs. (As all of a woman's eggs are present from birth, they would be harmed by certain drugs or procedures. There is no way to create more eggs, only ways they can be protected.)
Egg freezing has other possibilities as well. Especially without the label of experimental.
As a woman ages, so do her eggs. When eggs age, they become less and less viable. It's not impossible for a woman to have struturally healthy eggs, and chromisomally normal eggs into her 30's. Even her late 30's. Even her early 40's. But it's often harder and harder to find those that are structurally and chromisomally normal, and it often becomes more expensive as well. (Comprehensive Chromisonal Screening (CCS) is an ASRM prize-winning technique available at RMACT, with RMANJ, that tests for chromisonal normality in embryos.)
Freezing eggs for women at a younger age, understanding that there will be a better chance of becoming pregnant when ready, is now an option that could be more readily embraced with the label of experimental lifted from egg freezing.
Call it insurance.
Call it thinking towards the future.
The important piece here?
Egg freezing is now considered a "clinically viable technique".
Sometimes a name makes all the difference.