Sarah Gorrell from BBC Local Radio discusses social egg freezing with Dr. Carole Gilling-Smith, and Gemma – a patient at the Agora Clinic.
Campaigners are calling for changes to the laws which control the amount of time that women’s eggs can be stored before being destroyed. Women undertaking social egg freezing can only have their eggs frozen for a maximum of 10 years from the moment they are frozen.
As Dr. Carole Gilling-Smith points out:
… if you were in your late 20s and had your eggs frozen but then still hadn’t found the right partner in your late 30s, then you would have to have your your eggs destroyed.
A woman’s fertility declines from the age of 35 onwards, as does the quality of her eggs. So the critical time to egg freeze is ideally in your 20s, or early 30s.
There has been a significant increase in younger woman opting for social egg freezing.
We also we’re starting to see younger women coming forward as well, who perhaps are in their 20s, are aware that this social egg freezing process is available to them.
The law for egg freezing for medical reasons is different, as in Gemma’s case. The process is the same, but the storage period increases to a maximum of 55 years. Gemma, a local doctor, was fortunate to get an early diagnosis for skin cancer; she commented:
… if the diagnosis had been made at a later stage, or if indeed it recurred in the future, then I might need some treatment which could lead my fertility to decline or make it difficult for me to have children in the future.
And therefore, I looked into what sort of preemptive steps I could take to try to protect that part of my health and think about the steps I could in place to try and to try and think about that for the longer term.
Listen to the full interview below.