Prepping for your egg freezing cycle is not unlike prepping for an IVF cycle. We’ll be using the same injectable fertility meds to help your body mature and release a substantial quantity of eggs. You’re prone to fertility medication side effects, not to mention the increased busyness of keeping track of dates and appointments since we’ll monitor you every step in the way.
Preparing For Egg Retrieval
This guide will help you prepare your body, mind, and spirit for what’s ahead, so you can move through the egg retrieval and freezing process as effortlessly and stress-free as possible.
Step One: Learn more & find the right fertility center
If you are at the beginning stages of the egg freezing decision-making process, you should learn all you can about the process to determine whether you’re an ideal candidate.
It’s also time to explore potential fertility clinics. Odds are, this is the same clinic you’ll return to when you’re ready to thaw your eggs and move forward with IVF. Therefore, you want to find a clinic specializing in egg freezing and storing that you feel will take the best care of you when it’s time to use your precious treasure trove of eggs.
Step Two: Make healthy lifestyle choices
We have all kinds of ways to determine whether a woman has healthy egg stores (typically using AMH and AFC testing, as well as ultrasound images. However, to date, there is no way to test for egg “quality,” which is almost more important when it comes to conceiving a healthy baby.
Living as if you’re trying to conceive is the best way to keep your eggs as healthy as possible before we retrieve them. Make healthy diet choices, avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, and exercise regularly. Also, speak to your fertility specialist about adding fertility-friendly supplements, such as Omega-3s, folic acid, vitamin d, and CoEnzyme Q-10 (shown to boost energy in ovarian cells).
We recommend that egg freezing patients treat themselves like IVF patients, for the time being, eliminating alcohol, caffeine, CBD/marijuana, and smoking off the table until after the eggs are retrieved.
Step Three: Clear the Calendar
Your calendar will be pretty full with egg retrieval prep for the weeks leading up to your retrieval date. You’ll have scheduled injections, appointments with your fertility specialist to monitor follicle maturation and overall wellbeing in the days leading up to the retrieval and so on.
Plus, the potential side-effects associated with fertility medication (see next) may cause you to want to stay in and practice serious self-care to minimize discomfort, fatigue, or potential mood swings. Remember that, for many, using injectable medications brings on symptoms that are akin to a severe bout of PMS.
Step Four: Prepare for fertility injections and possible side effects
Oral fertility medications can produce side effects, but they are typically mild because pills only stimulate an extra follicle or two. Injectable fertility meds that stimulate and trigger the mature and release of multiple eggs (normally 10 to 20 or more) take a harder toll on your body.
Read our post, Injectable Fertility Medications, to learn more about how they work and what to expect so you’re prepared for all of the possibilities. Remember that you’ll be closely monitored every step of the way, and we can stop treatment immediately if it becomes too much for you. The good news is that severe side effects are very rare.
Step Five: Reduce stress (and cortisol levels)
Chronically elevated cortisol levels, a byproduct of stress, are not good for your body, mind, or spirit. In addition to increasing overall inflammation, high cortisol levels also affect fertility. The more you can do to reduce your stress and get healthy sleep, the better chance your body has of finding a healthy biochemical balance.
Read, Management of Stress to learn more about its benefits with respect to fertility care, and luxuriate in a great excuse to get to bed early and sneak in some extra weekend naptime.
Do you have questions about the egg freezing process? Or, are you interested in learning more about prepping for an upcoming egg freezing cycle. Feel free to contact us here at Northern California Fertility Medical Center. We’ve provided compassionate egg freezing, storage, and fertility support for women and couples for more than 25 years, and we’re excited to help you make your future fertility dreams come true.