Who Should do Fertility Preservation & When?

by | Jul 24, 2023 | Fertility

What is Fertility Preservation?

Fertility preservation saves your embryos, eggs, sperm & reproductive tissues. Fertility preservation helps you to have a child at the desired time in the future. Fertility preservation is a captivating aspect of modern medicine that allows individuals to safeguard their reproductive potential for the future. Whether it’s due to medical reasons or personal choices, this innovative technique has opened up possibilities for countless people worldwide.


Why is Fertility Preservation Done?

Life is unpredictable, and so are the circumstances that may impact our ability to conceive naturally. Fertility preservation is pursued for various reasons:

  1. Preserving Fertility Before Cancer Treatment: Facing a daunting medical diagnosis is undoubtedly overwhelming, but the desire to have a family persists despite the uncertainty. For individuals diagnosed with cancer or other medical conditions that could compromise fertility, fertility preservation offers a ray of hope. Chemotherapy, radiation, and certain medications may have adverse effects on reproductive organs, making it difficult or even impossible to conceive later in life. Through fertility preservation, these individuals can freeze eggs, sperm, or embryos before undergoing treatment, increasing the chances of starting a family once they are in remission.
  2. Empowering Family Planning for the Future: Life doesn’t always unfold as planned, and the right time for starting a family may not align with the present. Fertility preservation allows people to take control of their reproductive choices and embrace parenthood when the time is right for them. Some individuals may choose to delay family-building for career pursuits, education, or personal reasons. By preserving their fertility, they can preserve the possibility of parenthood while pursuing other life goals.
  3. Supporting LGBTQ+ Parenthood Journey: For LGBTQ+ couples and individuals, the path to parenthood may involve additional steps, but fertility preservation can be a vital part of their journey. Same-sex male couples or transgender individuals may opt to freeze sperm or eggs to have biological children in the future. Lesbian couples may choose to preserve their fertility by freezing eggs or embryos, allowing them to experience pregnancy and childbirth together.


What are the Types of Fertility Preservation?

Fertility preservation techniques have come a long way, with several options available to suit individual needs and preferences.

  1. Egg Freezing (Oocyte Cryopreservation): Egg freezing involves extracting a woman’s eggs, freezing them, and storing them until she is ready to conceive. This method is particularly beneficial for women who want to delay childbearing while maintaining the possibility of using their eggs later on.
  2. Sperm Freezing (Sperm Cryopreservation): Sperm freezing is a popular choice for men who want to preserve their fertility. Sperm samples are collected and then cryopreserved for future use. This method is commonly used before cancer treatments, as well as for those facing potential fertility challenges due to other medical reasons.
  3. Embryo Freezing (Embryo Cryopreservation): Embryo freezing involves fertilizing eggs with sperm in a laboratory setting, resulting in embryos. These embryos are then cryopreserved until the individual or couple is ready to start a family. This option is commonly used in fertility treatments like in vitro fertilization (IVF), where surplus embryos can be preserved for future use.
  4. Ovarian Tissue Freezing: This innovative technique involves removing a piece of ovarian tissue and freezing it for later use. It is especially beneficial for women who cannot undergo egg retrieval or are at risk of premature menopause due to medical treatments or conditions.
  5. Testicular Tissue Freezing: Testicular tissue freezing is a fertility preservation option for young boys who haven’t reached puberty or men who cannot provide a sperm sample. A small piece of testicular tissue is surgically removed and stored for potential future use.


Fertility Preservation for Iatrogenic Infertility:

The term “iatrogenic infertility” might sound intimidating, but it simply refers to infertility caused as a result of medical treatment. Cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and certain medications, can take a toll on the reproductive system, impacting fertility in both men and women. But don’t lose hope just yet; science has come a long way in providing options for fertility preservation.

While cancer treatment might feel like an uphill battle, the possibility of preserving fertility offers a glimmer of hope amidst the darkness. Advancements in medical science have opened doors to various fertility preservation techniques, empowering individuals to plan for their future families.


How Can Women Preserve Fertility Before Cancer Treatment?

For women facing cancer, fertility preservation can be an essential step in preserving their dreams of motherhood. Before undergoing cancer treatment, women have several options to safeguard their fertility.

  1. Egg Freezing: Egg freezing, also known as oocyte cryopreservation, is a remarkable technique that allows women to freeze and store their eggs until they are ready to start a family. This procedure offers hope to women diagnosed with cancer, providing them with the chance to conceive later when they are in remission.
  2. Ovarian Tissue Freezing: Another groundbreaking option for fertility preservation is ovarian tissue freezing. In this procedure, a small piece of ovarian tissue is surgically removed and stored. Once the cancer treatment is complete, the tissue can be transplanted back into the woman’s body, restoring her natural hormonal function and fertility.
  3. In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and Embryo Cryopreservation: IVF, paired with embryo cryopreservation, is a tried and tested method for preserving fertility. Before undergoing cancer treatment, eggs are retrieved, fertilized with sperm to form embryos, and then frozen for future use. This technique not only preserves fertility but also allows for genetic testing of embryos to ensure healthier pregnancies later on.


What Can Men Do to Preserve Fertility Before Cancer Treatment?

Men facing cancer also have the opportunity to safeguard their fertility before embarking on treatment. Let’s delve into some of the options available to preserve fertility for men.

  1. Sperm Cryopreservation: Sperm cryopreservation, commonly known as sperm freezing, is a straightforward and effective method for male fertility preservation. Before starting cancer treatment, men can provide a sperm sample, which is then frozen and stored until they are ready to start a family.
  2. Testicular Tissue Freezing: For prepubescent boys or those unable to produce sperm, testicular tissue freezing presents a ray of hope. A small piece of testicular tissue containing sperm precursor cells is removed and preserved for future use. Advancements in research may someday allow scientists to mature these cells into functional sperm.


What Happens to the Frozen Embryos, Eggs, and Sperm?

Once the eggs, sperm, or embryos are carefully frozen and stored, what happens next? Let’s explore the potential scenarios. Frozen eggs, sperm, or embryos remain safely stored until the individual or couple is ready to begin their journey toward parenthood. The process of thawing and using these preserved gametes or embryos is a testament to the wonders of modern science.


Advantages of Fertility Preservation:

  • Preserving Youthful Fertility: As time passes, fertility naturally declines, and age can impact pregnancy outcomes. Fertility preservation enables individuals to freeze their gametes or embryos at a younger age when the reproductive potential is at its peak. This preserves the quality and viability of the reproductive cells, increasing the chances of successful conception in the future.
  • Reducing Emotional Distress: A diagnosis of a medical condition that threatens fertility can be emotionally distressing. Fertility preservation offers a sense of security and peace of mind, knowing that options for parenthood remain available even after the completion of treatments. This emotional support can positively impact the overall well-being of those facing fertility challenges.


Risks of Fertility Preservation:

While fertility preservation offers immense advantages, it’s essential to be aware of the potential risks and limitations associated with the procedures.

  • No Guarantees of Success: While fertility preservation techniques have significantly improved, there are no guarantees of successful conception in the future. Success rates may vary based on individual circumstances, including age, overall health, and the chosen preservation method. It’s crucial to have realistic expectations and consider other family-building options as well.
  • Financial Burden: Fertility preservation procedures can be financially challenging for some individuals. The costs involved in freezing and storing reproductive cells may not be covered by insurance, adding to the burden of medical expenses. However, considering the long-term benefits, many view it as an investment in their future.


Success Rate of Fertility Preservation in India:

India’s advancements in medical technology have led to increasingly successful fertility preservation outcomes. The success rate of fertility preservation in the country has been encouraging, bringing hope to many.

  • Egg Freezing Success: Egg freezing success rates have improved significantly in India, especially with the introduction of vitrification—a technique that enhances the survival of frozen eggs. This has opened up new possibilities for women who wish to preserve their fertility for various reasons.
  • IVF and Embryo Cryopreservation: In cases where couples choose embryo cryopreservation through in vitro fertilization (IVF), the success rates are also promising. The ability to freeze and store viable embryos allows couples to plan for their family-building journey according to their timeline and circumstances.



Fertility preservation is a tapestry of hope, woven with threads of medical advancements and personal dreams. Whether it’s facing a medical challenge, empowering family planning, or embarking on an LGBTQ+ parenthood journey, this remarkable field of medicine has enriched countless lives. The various types of fertility preservation, from egg-freezing to testicular tissue freezing, offer a diverse range of possibilities to suit individual circumstances.

As we navigate the unpredictability of life, fertility preservation stands as a beacon of reassurance, empowering us to embrace the joy of parenthood whenever the time is right. It’s a testament to the indomitable human spirit, a celebration of life’s resilience, and a profound expression of our desire to nurture and be nurtured.



Q: What is the process of fertility preservation?

A: Fertility preservation is a medical process that involves freezing and storing reproductive cells (eggs, sperm, or embryos) for future use. It allows individuals facing medical treatments that may harm fertility, such as cancer therapies, to preserve their ability to have biological children later in life.

Q: What is fertility preservation for men?

A: Fertility preservation for men, also known as sperm preservation, is a technique where a man’s sperm is collected, frozen, and stored for future use. This procedure allows men to safeguard their fertility before undergoing treatments that may affect their ability to produce viable sperm.

Q: Who needs fertility preservation?

A: Fertility preservation is recommended for individuals facing medical conditions or treatments that can impair their reproductive capacity. This includes men and women undergoing cancer therapies, as well as those with conditions affecting their reproductive organs or fertility.

Q: What is sperm preservation called?

A: Sperm preservation is commonly referred to as sperm cryopreservation or sperm freezing. It involves freezing and storing a man’s sperm at extremely low temperatures to maintain its viability for future use in fertility treatments.

Q: Can my husband save his sperm?

A: Yes, your husband can save his sperm through the process of sperm preservation. If he is facing medical treatments that may impact his fertility or if you both wish to plan for future parenthood, sperm preservation is a viable option.

Q: What is the best sperm preservation?

A: The best sperm preservation method is sperm cryopreservation. It has been widely used and proven effective in maintaining sperm viability over an extended period. This method ensures that the frozen sperm can be used for various fertility treatments, including in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI).

Q: What is IVF for fertility preservation?FertilityEgg

A: IVF (in vitro fertilization) for fertility preservation involves stimulating a woman’s ovaries to produce multiple eggs, which are then retrieved and fertilized with sperm outside the body. The resulting embryos are frozen and stored for future use, providing an option for conception at a later time when the individual is ready to start a family.

Q: What types of infertility are there?

A: There are various types of infertility, which can affect both men and women. Female infertility can be caused by factors like ovulation disorders, blocked fallopian tubes, or age-related decline in egg quantity and quality. Male infertility may result from low sperm count, abnormal sperm function, or issues with sperm delivery. Additionally, some cases of infertility are attributed to both partners having contributing factors. Egg

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    Dr Mona Dahiya

    Dr Mona Dahiya

    IVF Specialist & Consultant

    Dr Mona Dahiya has performed over 5,000+ IVF cycles and is considered a global expert in IVF, ICSI, IUI and male fertility treatment. She is an eminent writer on Infertility Treatment and has over 100 Publications in both International and National Journals. Dr Mona Dahiya has immensely contributed to the field of infertility through her Research and articles.

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