Cryopreservation (Embryo and Sperm Freezing)
Following IVF treatment, there may be surplus embryos after embryo transfer. Depending on their quality they may be frozen for transfer at a later date. The statutory storage period for frozen embryos is five years, although in certain circumstances this may be extended to ten years.
Most semen samples can be frozen for long periods. The legal limit for storage is ten years although this may be extended in certain circumstances.
Sperm cryopreservation is indicated for the following reasons:
- Prior to vasectomy
- Surplus sperm obtained following routine surgical sperm retrieval
- Patients with very low sperm numbers may freeze repeated samples
Sadly, some people have to face the prospect of cancer or other illnesses and the impact these can have on potential future fertility. Burton Fertility in partnership with Nurture Nottingham can, in certain circumstances, offer help in the following ways:
- Cryopreservation of sperm prior to chemo/radiotherapy
- Patients with spinal injury, following electro-ejaculation or surgical sperm retrieval
- A couple can undergo an IVF or ICSI cycle and the resulting embryos can be cryopreserved for use in the future Cryopreservation of mature eggs
Testicular or ovarian tissue can also be cryopreserved. However, this is an experimental procedure and may not offer success in the future.