Semen Cryopreservation Procedures
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Semen Cryopreservation Procedures

Semen Cryopreservation Procedures

With the ongoing developments in the field of medicine, many methods can be successfully applied to individuals who want to have babies. There are sperm freezing, egg freezing, and embryo freezing options, especially for people who want to exercise their right to parenthood in the future.

What is semen cryopreservation?

Semen cryopreservation is a successful method used to maintain a man’s fertility. Sperm stored by freezing allows the person to have children at a future date or to be donated and used in the treatment of infertility of other individuals.

The semen cryopreservation process begins with the collection of sperm samples from the male. The collected sperm is combined with a special liquid to protect the sperm from damage that may occur during the procedure in the laboratory environment. This mixture is then slowly cooled and stored in liquid nitrogen. Sperm samples are usually stored by dividing, not whole. This method aims that not all sperm are dissolved at once and can be used in multiple treatments if necessary.

You may want to take a look at this: What is semen cryopreservation, how does it work?

What does semen cryopreservation do?

  • To maintain fertility before procedures that may affect fertility such as cancer treatments,
  • To make sure about having a baby in the future before a required vasectomy procedure,
  • Constantly decreasing count and quality of sperm due to advancing age,
  • Semen cryopreservation can be performed due to reasons such as difficulty in producing sperm samples during fertility treatment.

What is oocyte cryopreservation?

The process of freezing and storing fertile egg cells extracted from women for future use is called oocyte cryopreservation. Egg cells extracted by a surgical procedure are first subjected to a number of tests and, if appropriate, mixed with a freezing solution. Eggs are either slowly frozen or frozen through vitrification (rapid freezing) and stored in liquid nitrogen tanks.

Egg reserves in women constantly decline with advancing age and fertility ends with menopause. Therefore, women who apply for oocyte cryopreservation during fertility can have babies at any time in the future. In addition, frozen eggs may be donated and used in the treatment of other individuals.

What does oocyte cryopreservation do?

  • If there is a condition that will adversely affect fertility such as cancer types,
  • If conception at a future date is desired, but there is concern that ovarian reserves may not be sufficient,
  • If there is a risk of early menopause,
  • If egg retrieval has been performed during IVF treatment and the use of the same egg cells during subsequent cycles is desired, the oocyte cryopreservation method can be applied.

What is embryo cryopreservation?

Some people receiving fertility treatment may have healthy embryos that are formed during the first cycle but are not transferred. These embryos can be frozen and used during subsequent treatments or donated to other individuals.  Not all embryos are suitable for cryopreservation. Therefore, only good quality embryos must be selected to freeze.

During the embryo cryopreservation process, the embryos are placed in a special substance that replaces their cells with water. This is performed to protect the embryos from damage caused by ice crystals. They are then slowly frozen or frozen through vitrification (rapid freezing) and stored in liquid nitrogen tanks. When the frozen embryos are desired to be used, they are dissolved with a special method and then the transfer stage begins.

For detailed information: 7 Questions About Embryo Cryopreservation

What does embryo cryopreservation do?

  • If the retrieved embryos are intended to be used in future IVF or microinjection cycles,
  • If operations with challenging procedures such as egg growth and egg retrieval are not desired,
  • Embryo cryopreservation can be performed for any condition that may affect your fertility or if treatment is required.

Procedures such as sperm cryopreservation, oocyte cryopreservation, and embryo cryopreservation are treatments that assure the right of people to parenthood in the future. Eligibility for such procedures should be decided together with the specialist physician.