Most girls who freeze eggs do not use them in any way, according to the study.
In current years, the variety of girls trying to protect their fertility has grown rapidly, regardless of the physical and monetary toll of the method.
But the majority of ladies who opt for this selection – with a staggering price tag of hundreds of kilos – find that they don’t use their eggs and even end up going back to the fertility clinic, according to a new analysis.
Staff at the University Hospital of Brussels, a teaching hospital in Belgium, studied 843 girls who had chosen to freeze their eggs between 2009 and 2019.
Their combined age at the time was 36, and most had no partners.
Staff at the University Hospital of Brussels, a teaching hospital in Belgium, studied 843 girls who had chosen to freeze their eggs between 2009 and 2019. Their combined age at the time was 36, and most had no partners. However, by May 2022, only a quarter of the girls – 27% – had returned to the middle part of the therapy.
By May 2022, only a couple of quarters — 27% — of girls had returned to the midsection for therapy.
Their combined age when they returned was 40, and most of them were in relationships at the time.
Of the ladies who returned for fertility treatment, less than half – 48% – chose to use their frozen eggs.
Some underwent intrauterine insemination, where sperm are immediately injected into the uterus, while others underwent other fertility treatments, the equivalent of IVF with recent eggs.
Further evaluation confirmed that the typical age of the ladies who used frozen eggs was 42, while the women who used fresh eggs were about three years younger.
It means freezing eggs can help girls give birth later, but advisers warned it could be an “expensive option” and many women have not gone back to using it.
dr. Ezgi Darici presented an analysis of the European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) Annual Assembly in Copenhagen.
She mentioned: “More and more women are choosing to freeze their eggs in the hope that they can have children later in life.
However, it can be an expensive option and there is a lack of evidence to show how useful it is.
“We found that many women who chose to freeze their eggs in their 30s had not yet returned for fertility treatment.
About half of those who returned for treatment used their frozen eggs. They were middle-aged women.
ESHRE President Professor Carlos Calhaz-Jorge said: “The aim of planned oocyte cryopreservation is to reduce the risk of infertility later in life.
However, it can be an expensive option and there is a lack of evidence to show how useful it is. This study suggests that frozen eggs may be beneficial for older women who have difficulty conceiving; however, we need much more research to prove that this is the case.
Regular reports on fertility outcomes for women who choose to freeze their eggs would help build a clearer picture. This could help guide the development of young women considering freezing their eggs.
Statistics published at the end of the last 12 months confirmed that the lockdown throughout the Covid period had caused a wave of egg freezing among girls who feared they were about to expire to have a baby.
The figures confirmed that 1,874 girls could have their eggs frozen in the UK in 2020 – almost doubling since 2015 when 945 girls opted for the process.
The full course, complete with egg freezing and thawing, comes with an average ticket price of £8,000.
A separate study conducted during this 12 months also found that women who freeze their eggs over the age of 40 are less likely to have a child.
Analysts led by Imperial College London examined all 373 girls whose eggs had been frozen for more than a decade at a private clinic in London.
About a third of those who had reached the age of 30 at the time of egg freezing gave birth to a child after returning to the clinic.
But zero percent of girls who were 40 or older at the time of egg freezing had a child between 2008 and 2018.