In the last two decades, the age to become a mother has been significantly delayed, which is why egg freezing has become increasingly popular. If in the 80s, the average age of first-time mothers was 25 years old (and only 1% of the female population had their first child after 40 years), the average age to be a mother today already exceeds 30 years, according to the latest Fertility Survey published by the INE (National Institute of Statistics).
Times have changed and, to this day, reconciling professional and family life continues to be difficult for the vast majority. If we add to this the lack of economic stability that prevails in today’s society, it is easy to understand that motherhood is postponed. Delaying the age to achieve pregnancy also implies, among other things, that women have fewer children than desired. One of the reasons is that as our age increases, the desire to be a mother decreases by a high percentage, according to the INE survey. The other, of great weight, is that the ovarian reserve decreases both in quantity and quality over the years.
For the latter, freezing eggs is an option that is gaining popularity among women who do not plan to have children until well past thirty, although age is not the only reason: some women also do it before undergoing invasive treatment such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy, or if we have detected an autoimmune disease that could affect fertility.
What is egg freezing or vitrification?
To freeze eggs or, what is the same, to carry out a vitrification process, first of all, ovarian stimulation must be carried out to increase the number of eggs obtained in each cycle. When using the pertinent control ultrasounds, it is estimated that the desired number has already been reached, a transvaginal puncture is performed and freezing is carried out. This puncture involves going through the operating room and sedating the patient. Once the eggs have been frozen they can remain that way indefinitely, as their quality does not deteriorate over time.
To have a good chance of getting pregnant in the future, it is necessary to have frozen about 25-30 eggs. Taking into account that in a vitrification cycle between 8 and 10 mature eggs are obtained, it is usually recommended to carry out 2 or 3 freezing cycles. In any case, in the hormonal analysis that is carried out before the treatment, you can already have an approximate idea of how many eggs we will be able to obtain in each cycle.
How much does the whole egg freezing process cost?
Egg freezing to delay childbearing is a treatment that is not covered by Social Security today, except when it is performed to preserve fertility due to cancer. Therefore, to carry out the vitrification of the eggs it is necessary to go to a private fertility clinic, and depending on the clinic that is chosen, the prices can undergo significant variations.
The price range starts at approximately 2,500 euros up to a maximum of 5,000 euros. Some clinics include within this payment the cryopreservation of the ovules between one and five years. Once the storage period agreed at the initial price is over, the maintenance of the frozen eggs can cost between 200 and 350 euros per year.
If you are thinking of performing an egg freezing treatment, you may have that money and it will not be a problem for you to make the payment requested by the clinic you have chosen. If not, most of these private centers have financing plans that can allow you to carry out your desire to be a mother in the future with some comfort.