Do Sperm Banks Also Store Eggs and Embryos?
Sperm banks, which are typically known for sperm donation or sperm freezing, often aren’t considered by people who are looking for frozen egg and embryo storage options. While it’s true that some sperm banks are focused only on sperm, some, such as the Fertility Center of California, have the capacity and expertise to expand their cryopreservation storage space to more than just sperm.
How Does Cryopreservation Work for Eggs and Embryos?
In fertility preservation, eggs are retrieved from a woman’s ovaries through ovarian stimulation and then frozen in a laboratory. Some women choose to freeze their eggs for social reasons, while others do so for medical reasons. For example, a woman might freeze her eggs if she’s about to undergo cancer treatments that will harm her fertility.
If the woman has a partner or a sperm donor, the eggs can first be fertilized in a laboratory, and the ensuing embryo can be frozen. People sometimes choose to do this if they want to have another child in the future but don’t want to go through an entire ovarian stimulation cycle again. Frozen eggs and embryos can be thawed out years later and used in fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF).
Long-Term Storage of Eggs and Embryos
Once the eggs and embryos are frozen, they need a home where they can stay for as long as necessary. Frozen eggs and embryos are precious beacons of hope for anyone who wants to have a child in the future but can’t have one right now. Just as you would with your most prized, delicate possessions, you want to be sure that your eggs and embryos will be kept safe and secure within the most precise and meticulous of storage places. Whether it be your IVF clinic or a sperm bank, you want to be sure you’re working with a facility that has a documented history of providing high-quality long-term storage options for eggs and embryos.
Why Choose a Sperm Bank for Egg and Embryo Cryopreservation?
Even if your IVF clinic offers storage options for your frozen eggs and embryos, they might not necessarily be the best option for you. Some sperm banks offer a number of incentives, including:
Competitive long-term storage fees for frozen embryos and eggs, including for military personnel or cancer patients
Enhanced security monitoring and advanced cryopreservation technology
The ability to store and quarantine specimens with infectious diseases
The use of 100% vapor-phase storage techniques, which prevent infectious diseases from being spread
Storage tanks that can operate without electricity
There are also other logistical and practical reasons you might choose to store your frozen eggs or embryos at a sperm bank, such as:
Your IVF clinic has limited storage
Your IVF clinic is closing
Your IVF clinic offers only short-term storage options
If your frozen eggs or embryos need long-term storage, consider looking into a sperm bank. To learn more, contact the Fertility Center of California today.