Egg freezing can seem like a simple solution for women who know they want to be a mum in the future but not now. Ahead of coming into the clinic the thought of support being available can seem a bit odd; why will I need it? Trisha Patel, one of our fertility coaches at the LWC shares how we can provide support to women who are freezing their eggs.
The first steps
“Coming into the clinic and checking your fertility can be the first step towards taking control of your future fertility,” says Trisha. At the LWC a fertility health check or ‘Fertility MOT’ involves an Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH) blood test to assess your ovarian reserve and a pelvic ultrasound scan of your womb and ovaries. One of our specialists will discuss with you your results as well as your medical history to advise you on your fertility. This information will help you make decisions about your next steps and whether egg freezing is right for you.
“Counselling and support are always available after a Fertility MOT for women who are considering freezing their eggs. Sometimes you might just want to have a chat with someone who understands how big a decision it is or perhaps the results of your tests haven’t been what you expected,” says Trisha. As well as providing support over the phone and email, Trisha can also arrange appointments with a counsellor to talk over your test results or to weigh up your options which is often helpful.
The egg freezing process
When you decide to freeze your eggs, you will meet with one of our team of fertility nurses to plan your treatment and learn how to take your medication. The egg freezing process is the same as the first half of an IVF cycle. This involves taking medication to stimulate your ovaries for around 10 to 14 days. On the day of your last scan, you’ll be told when to take your “trigger” injection which will mature your eggs ready for collection. Around 36 hours later you will attend the clinic for your egg collection procedure which is performed under a small dose of sedation. The day after the procedure you can go back to your normal life.
“Fertility treatment can be tough, and I’m always here to chat or have a moan with about having to take injections.” says Trisha “I often find that women freezing their eggs can be incredibly hard on themselves. They think because they have chosen to do this that they have to positive all the time which just isn’t possible.”
Support before, during and after treatment
Once the eggs are safely in the freezer, many women often feel a great deal of satisfaction and reassured that they had taken back some control over their fertility. However, “For some women freezing their eggs can be a reminder of how much they want to have a family,” says Trisha. For this reason, Trisha alongside our counselling and support team are always available before during and after treatment. “I still have calls from women who froze their eggs years ago who just want someone to chat to. Or some women might perhaps be thinking about using their frozen eggs to have a baby now either with a new partner or with a sperm donor.”
Find out more
Practical considerations and the media, or a well-meaning friend may have been the prompt for you to take the next steps to find out more about egg freezing. We encourage anyone considering freezing their eggs to attend a free open day where they can find out more about how the process works, how much it costs and to understand more about their fertility. London Women’s Clinic works closely with the London Egg Bank who arrange monthly egg freezing information seminars which are a great first step to understanding the options open to you. You can visit their website for the next available dates or call 0203 826 3213.
For more information on the support available at London Women’s Clinic or to find out more about our monthly support groups, please visit our support hub or contact Trisha via firstname.lastname@example.org.