Vitration of oocytes: what is it?
In recent years, extracorporeal fertilization has been developing very rapidly. This procedure is no longer considered something incredible and inaccessible to ordinary people. ECO is carried out all over the world. Specialized laboratories and clinics are available in every major city. Annually, new, improved approaches to fertilization are being developed. Thanks to the development of this method, many infertile couples were able to become parents. Often when collecting information on IVF, women are faced with such a concept as vitrification of oocytes. By this term is meant a relatively new procedure, which allows to improve the quality of the oocytes. The concept of "vitrification of oocytes" - what is it?
To understand how the vitrification process takes place, it is necessary to have an idea of in vitro fertilization. This procedure involves the collection of female reproductive cells( oocytes) from the ovary. Then they are cleansed and fertilized by the partner's sperm or donor( if the husband can not have children).After this, the zygote that began to divide is placed in the uterine cavity. Oocyte vitrification is a procedure similar to cryopreservation of oocytes. However, it is more refined. By vitrification is meant the freezing of immature sex cells. As a result, oocytes can be stored for a long time. Despite the "frozen" state, the vitrified cells remain viable. This procedure is considered a huge breakthrough in medicine, because thanks to it, women have the opportunity to have a child even in the absence of reproductive organs.
What is the purpose of vitrification of oocytes?
In Europe, concepts such as cryopreservation, vitrification of embryos and oocytes have been known for a long time. This can be judged by western films dedicated to medicine. In the post-Soviet countries, doctors are also familiar with these terms for several decades. Nevertheless, these procedures have become available to patients recently. In most cases, oocyte vitrification is performed for in vitro fertilization. When carrying out the freezing of immature cells in this way, the woman has a better chance of successful IVF.The first batch of oocytes isolated from the ovary may not settle down. In this case, repeated sampling of the material is not required, since there are already vitrified cells. In addition, there are cases when the infertile couple asks about the preservation of oocytes for a long time. Often this is required for various pathological conditions in which a woman can not have children. Also with such a request apply to patients preparing for an operation to remove reproductive organs.
At what pathologies do egg vitrification recommend?
Vitrification of oocytes and embryos is a paid procedure, accessible to all comers. There are no special indications for it, nevertheless it is needed only in specific cases. This does not mean that some women can not afford to vitrify their cells. Nevertheless, in the absence of reasons for freezing oocytes in this way, patients are recommended cryopreservation. Most often, vitrification is performed under the following conditions:
- Preparation for oophorectomy. This operation is performed in ovarian cancer and suspected of its development. This reason is not too common, since in most cases with the oncogynecologic pathologies, the uterus is also removed.
- Impossibility to obtain spermatozoa on the day of oocyte collection. For this reason, the cells need to be frozen until the material for fertilization is provided.
- Oncological diseases of any localization. Regardless of where the cancer tumor is, it is necessary to conduct radiation therapy and treatment with chemical( cytostatic) drugs. With each of these methods of exposure, pregnancy is undesirable. After all, these methods of treatment destroy not only cancerous, but healthy cells, including oocytes.
- The desire of a woman to have children in a remote period, for example, after menopause. In such cases, cryopreservation is rarely productive, since eggs with this method of freezing are not sustainable for long. Therefore, doctors offer an alternative method - vitrification of oocytes.
- Repeated IVF, if the eggs are not used the first time. In this case, offer vitrification, so as not to take the material three times. Vitrified donor oocytes - what is it?
In some cases, a barren couple can not conceive a child even with the help of in vitro fertilization. It is about women who have a dysfunction of the sex glands. To this end, banks of donor oocytes have been developed. Unfortunately, they are not available in all countries. All immature germ cells are in a vitrified state, so they can be stored. Indications for IVF using donor oocytes are:
- Genetically determined pathology is a syndrome of ovarian malnutrition.
- Absence of oocytes due to age characteristics of the reproductive system( from 40 years and older).
- Impossibility to stimulate ovulation due to surgical interventions on the ovaries, the effects of chemotherapy.
- Risk of a child with a genetic pathology.
- Repeated ECO, which did not result in the result of "poor quality" of its own eggs.
Who can become a donor of vitrified oocytes:
requirements Family planning is a very serious decision, especially when the couple is forced to use donor cells. Before receiving oocytes and subjecting them to vitrification, doctors conduct a variety of examinations of both the woman herself and the material provided. One of the conditions established in the bank of frozen eggs is anonymity. That is, future parents should not know about the donor, and vice versa. Requirements for women who decided to vitrifuge their oocytes:
- Age: 20-35 years.
- Absence of somatic and genetic diseases. The pronounced phenotype.
- The donor has at least one of his own children.
- Consent to confidentiality.
Before starting to freeze female germ cells, ovulation stimulation is performed. It is necessary that there are several oocytes, and not one. After all, in normal ovulation occurs maturation and the release of the follicle only 1 egg. Stimulation is medicated. Next is the ultrasound of the pelvic organs. If it turned out that ovulation has been carried out and the oocytes are in sufficient quantity in the ovary, the IVF procedure continues. The fence of cells is carried out under anesthesia. In order for the puncture needle to get to where the oocytes are located, the whole procedure is performed under the control of ultrasound. After taking the material, proceed to the next stage - preservation of immature oocytes. The vitrification of oocytes in the natural cycle is performed due to the fast freezing method. This is the main feature of this method of conservation.
Benefits of vitrification of eggs
Given that the vitrification process has gradually begun to displace other methods of preserving eggs and embryos, it is more preferable not only in the opinion of doctors, but also for patients. This method has the following advantages:
- Possibility to delay pregnancy. Due to the fact that oocytes and embryos are frozen for a long time( depending on the decision of the woman).
- Possibility to repeat the IVF procedure without taking the material in the second( or more) times.
- Ability to conceive after surgical interventions on the sex glands, radiation and chemotherapy.
What is the difference between vitrification and cryopreservation of eggs?
As is known, cryocene and vitrification processes of eggs are very similar. Both methods are designed to freeze oocytes and embryos in order to preserve their viability. Nevertheless, there are some differences. Often when cryopreservation, unripe eggs are damaged. This is due to the fact that this method implies a slow freezing of the material. As a result, the liquid cytoplasm turns into ice crystals. They also damage the cell wall. An excellent method of cryopreservation is vitrification of oocytes. The percentage of defrost at its carrying out is much lower, since the cooling of eggs occurs almost instantaneously. That is, the main difference from cryopreservation is considered new technologies that allow long-term preservation of oocytes in a viable state. To delay conception for a long time is possible only by vitrification. Cryopreservation does not give such lasting results.
How is IVF performed after vitrification of oocytes?
Oocyte vitrification is not carried out anywhere. The freezing of germ cells and embryos for a long time only in highly specialized laboratories. Practically at each clinic with the given equipment there is a bank of donor vitrified oocytes. After the woman decided on the desire to conceive a child, the cells unfreeze. Then, using the ICSI method, fertilization is performed. The resulting embryo is cultured( 3-5 days), and implanted into a pre-prepared endometrium. The remaining fertilized cells can be vitrified again. If the implantation fails, the IVF procedure is repeated.
Vitotification of oocytes: doctor's reviews
At present vitrification and storage of oocytes and embryos is performed in all major cities with advanced medicine. After this method has been tested and proved itself, doctors speak about it positively, evaluating the advantages over other( early) egg storage procedures. Many women can allow themselves to freeze their own oocytes. The cost of the procedure is about 12 thousand rubles. This is the price for vitrification. The cost of storing frozen cells is 1 thousand rubles a month.