During in vitro fertilization (IVF) or intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) treatment, fertility drugs are used to stimulate the ovaries to produce more eggs than usual. These are then fertilized with your partner's, or a donor's sperm to create embryos.
Because there is normally a number of unused embryos, some people choose to freeze the good quality unused embryos for use in later treatment cycles or for donation.
What is my chance of having a baby using frozen embryos?
Due to the freezing and thawing process, chances of having a baby using a thawed frozen embryo are lower than with a fresh embryo.
Chances of becoming pregnant with a thawed frozen embryo are not affected by the length of time the embryo has been stored for.
What are the risks of freezing embryos?
Not all embryos will survive freezing and eventual thawing when they come to be used. Very occasionally no embryos will survive.
It is not uncommon for those embryos that do survive freezing and thawing to lose a cell or two. Ideally the embryos should continue to divide between thawing and transfer.
As embryo transfer is involved in using frozen embryos, the same risks apply.