Over the last week, I am sure you all might have had so many questions, concerns, and even doubts about the term “egg-freezing” – mentioned in my last blog. Also with the advent of technology and our dear “Google”, many of you may have even researched details about it – what it means, what it implies, its pros and cons, and so on. Although, everything is out there on the internet and much has already been written in thousands of articles surrounding this topic, it is imperative that being a practicing embryologist and someone who has been using this technique for quite a few years. I need to shed some more light and share my insight into this subject matter, that seems like a relatively foreign term and technology.
My Fortunate Meeting with Dr Kuwayama…
A couple years ago, during my fortunate meeting with Dr. Masashige Kuwayama, a highly skilled embryologist, I got the golden opportunity to learn about “Egg Freezing” in depth & attain immaculate, hands-on training on this unique technique. To his credit, Dr. Kuwayama has introduced several novel procedures to vitrify oocytes & embryos. The “Cryotec Method” or “Vitrification Process” – developed by him, is the third major advance in human Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART), after In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF) & Intra-Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI).
Although over the past few decades, Dr. Kuwayama has taught his Vitrification skills to physicians and embryologists like me, in human clinics located in more than 40 countries – I personally feel that it is the need of the hour to explain in simpler words what does “Vitrification of Oocytes and Embryos” actually implies.
An oocyte, which is a female gametocyte or germ cell, is involved in reproduction process that eventually leads to the pregnancy. These Eggs (or the medical term – oocytes) are frozen using either a controlled-rate, slow-cooling method or a newer flash-freezing process known as “vitrification”. Vitrification is a technology that is used to freeze the embryo and egg in a state so that they can be stored and be viable for later use. Currently, the protocol of vitrification has been optimized to preserve oocytes, as well as embryos of any developmental stage. These optimizations result in very high functional survival of oocytes, assuring high rates of fertilization after ICSI and high rates of pregnancy after embryo transfer.
This Cryotec Method is the most trusted method of cryopreservation, as this open style method is recognized as easy, simple and repeatable for all.
The “Cryotec”, is a special device that allows minimizing the volume that will be cool and warm with a result up to 100% of survival for oocytes, as well as embryos (in all the different stages of pre-implantation). Additionally, ensuring the strict adherence to specific details of The Cryotec Method, every clinical embryologist is assured of achieving 100% survival of normal oocytes and embryos for their patients.
I know this piece of news must seem astonishing and many skeptical minds would be brimming with the only thought, –
“How is the Cryotec Method able to produce a 100% survival rate?”
At this juncture I will share with you the most unique advantages of this method that enable it to produce such high success in the survival rates of the normal oocytes and embryos:
- Best Vitrification Solution – Highly Capable, Safe and Toxin Free
- Best Vitrification Container – Optimally designed
- Easy Warming Plate
- Ease of Handling
So how much of a difference does this process make?
A lot, actually! One study by the Center for Reproductive Medicine found that eggs frozen via other vitrification methods had a 91 percent survival rate, compared to a 61 percent survival rate of eggs stored using slow freezing. However, Dr. Kuwayama’s “Cryotec Method” bumps the survival rate up to 100% by controlling all environmental factors and utilizing specifically designed tools.
I hope that you enjoyed learning about these fascinating facts on The Cryotec Method. I know from a non-clinical standpoint you may have many questions and concerns about the methodology and the concept of Egg Freezing.
So share your thoughts with me and I will surely come back with my next blog highlighting more details to answer your concerns as simply as I can.