Often with IVF or ICSI, people have a number of unused embryos after their first cycle. Some people choose to freeze them for use in later treatment cycles or to donate for use in others’ treatment, research purposes or training.
Your chances of becoming pregnant with a thawed frozen embryo are not affected by the length of time the embryo has been stored. But not all embryos will survive freezing and eventual thawing when they come to be used. Very occasionally no embryos will survive.
You may consider freezing your embryos for the following reasons:
- It gives you the option of using the embryos in future IVF or ICSI cycles.
- If your treatment needs to be canceled after egg collection (for example, if you have a bad reaction to fertility drugs), you may still be able to store your embryos for future use.
- If you have a condition or are facing medical treatment for a condition, that might affect your fertility (embryo freezing is currently the most effective way for women to preserve their fertility).
- You are at risk of injury or death (eg, you’re a member of the Armed Forces who is being deployed to a war zone).
Due to the freezing and thawing process, your chances of having a baby using a thawed frozen embryo are lower than with a fresh embryo.
Your chances of becoming pregnant with a thawed frozen embryo are not affected by the length of time the embryo has been stored for.