If you've struggled with infertility, you likely know that nothing — not even IVF — is a pregnancy guarantee. When you freeze your eggs, for example, they don't even survive the thawing process every time — let alone make it all the way through fertilization and implantation. But now, an NYC egg-freezing lab is changing the game — with a promise (yep, a pledge, commitment, and guarantee) to deliver a near-100% survival rate for your frozen eggs. How on earth is this possible?
The lab, Extend Fertility, announced this week that it is now fully operational and using what it calls "the most advanced method of egg freezing available for cryopreserving eggs." The lab's assistant director Leslie Ramirez, PhD, explained in the release that this new freezing method "is superior to its slower predecessors, which introduced more opportunities for errors that can destroy the viability of stored eggs by damaging their cellular structure."
Basically, the method's speed lessens the opportunity for pesky ice crystals to form between cells during the freezing process. This, along with heavily controlled environmental factors in the lab, contributes to the near-perfect survival rate of oocytes, or pre-ova.
According to SheKnows, Extend Fertility operates on a "goal-oriented pricing model" of $4,990 for 12 viable frozen eggs. Still steep — but compared to the typical $10K for freezing eggs with zero guaranteed viability, it's a bargain. And although still a far cry from a guaranteed baby, 12 guaranteed oocytes is a solid starting point.
Welcome to Mothership: Parenting stories you actually want to read, whether you're thinking about or passing on kids, from egg-freezing to taking home baby and beyond. Because motherhood is a big if — not when — and it's time we talked about it that way.