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Fertility Preservation: What are its Types?

Team AckoFeb 8, 2024

Fertility preservation involves freezing of eggs, sperm, embryos or a reproductive tissue which will help a person to have biological children in future.   Certain medical conditions and life events can disrupt fertility later on and make it difficult to conceive. People in such situations can benefit from fertility preservation.



There are various fertility preservation options available for both male and female.

Fertility Preservation Options for Female:

Egg Freezing

Egg freezing, called Oocyte cryopreservation is an option where unfertilized eggs are frozen and stored for future use. When a woman decides to have children at a later date, she can preserve her fertility by freezing her eggs when she is young.

Embryo Cryopreservation

This is the most common and successful fertility preservation option.  Here, eggs are removed from the ovaries. The eggs are then fertilized with spouse/partner’s sperm in a lab. The embryos are frozen and stored for future use.

Ovarian Tissue Cryopreservation

This is the only fertility option available for girls who have not started their periods yet. Due to medical conditions like cancer, OTC gives hope for girls and young women to become a mother at a future date, when they have been treated and are healthier.   In this fertility preservation technique, a part or the entire ovary is removed. The tissue that contains the egg is then cut into thin slices and is frozen. The tissue is thawed later and placed back into the woman’s body. The tissue is usually placed on the remaining ovary.

Fertility Preservation Options for Men:

Sperm Freezing 

This is the most successful method to preserve male fertility. Here, a male provides his semen sample. The semen is then frozen and stored for future use when he is ready to have children. The semen sample is tested for sperm quality- number, shape and movement. The procedure is safe and does not damage the sperm. The stored sperm is viable for a very long time, even as long as 20 years and can be used to make healthy babies.

Testicular Tissue Cyropreservation

In this method, the tissue, which has cells that makes the sperm is removed from the testicles through a small cut. This tissue is frozen and stored for future date. The tissue is thawed when sperm has to be retrieved. This techniques is also useful to preserve future  fertility of  young boys who have not gone through puberty and are being treated for some medical condition.

While evaluating fertility preservation options, find whether health insurance would cover the costs of fertility preserving procedures. Talk to your fertility specialist about the risks and costs involved. He/She will suggest which fertility preservation option to go for after reviewing the situation taking into account your age, medical condition, sex and timing of starting the treatment. One or more options may be available.

The key is to work out what’s best for you in preserving your fertility and being able to be a parent at a future date when you are either ready, emotionally and financially to start a family or are healthier to embrace parenthood after being treated for a medical condition.

Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only, based on industry experience and secondary sources. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Please consult a qualified expert for health or insurance-related decisions. Content is subject to change, refer to current policy wordings for specific ACKO details.



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