The ten-year limit for frozen egg preservation by the government is a & # 39; clear violation of human rights & # 39; Because it forces women to destroy them before they are ready to have children, fertility experts warn
- Eggs can be frozen for decades with the latest medical technology
- Current UK legislation, however, says they must be destroyed after a decade
- Fertility Charity The Progress Educational Trust says the legislation & # 39; obsolete & # 39; is
The ten-year limit for frozen egg preservation by the government is a & # 39; very clear violation of human rights & # 39 ;, fertility experts have warned.
Lady eggs can be frozen for a long time with the latest technology, but according to current legislation they must be destroyed after a decade.
But the Progress Educational Trust says that the & # 39; outdated & # 39; legislation & # 39; hinders women's chances of becoming a biological mother & # 39 ;.
The charity fears that women will have their eggs destroyed before they are even ready to start a family or rush to find a sperm donor.
Lady eggs can be frozen for a long time with the latest technology, but according to current legislation they have to be destroyed after a decade (stock)
Sarah Norcross, director of PET, told the BBC that the current limit & # 39; a very clear violation of human rights & # 39; used to be.
& # 39; It limits women's reproductive choices, harming women's chances of becoming biological mothers has no scientific basis. & # 39;
She added that it is & # 39; obsolete & # 39 ;, & # 39; random & # 39; and & # 39; discriminatory & # 39; is opposed to women because of the decline in female fertility with age.
The ten-year law was introduced with the 1990 Human Fertilization and Embryology Act, but the government said that an extension would be a major policy change & # 39 ;.
The limits were originally introduced because the risks of long-term storage were unknown at that time.
HOW ARE FROZEN EGGS?
Egg freezing dates back to 1986 when the first pregnancy of a frozen egg was reported in the Lancet Journal.
The collected eggs were stored in cryogenic tanks after many years & # 39; slow & # 39; to be frozen.
In the early 2000s, scientists began experimenting with a & # 39; ultra-fast & # 39; freezing technique, called vitrification.
With this process, the temperature of an egg drops thousands of degrees per minute, resulting in a glassy cell structure that is stronger than other crystalline ice forms.
They are then stored in cryogenic tanks for a maximum of 25 years.
To prepare for egg collection, a woman must undergo the first phase of an IVF cycle, using hormones to stimulate more eggs into adulthood, and then another set of hormones to activate egg release.
Patients inject these drugs at home and are usually closely monitored by their doctors.
There are many different forms of these hormone treatments, ranging in costs from around $ 800 (£ 625) to $ 6,000 (£ 4,675) per cycle, and six to 10 weeks in duration.
The eggs are then surgically collected in a minimally invasive procedure.
Women who are infertile prematurely, for example in an early menopause, can keep their eggs for 55 years under the same laws.
PET says that women who decide whether to freeze their eggs, which costs around £ 5,000 in the UK, have to weigh a complicated opportunity.
The success rate for conception is higher the younger you are when freezing eggs, and therefore experts recommend doing this before the age of 35.
Women who freeze their eggs in their twenties, however, are more likely to become pregnant naturally, making it a waste of money.
For example, if a woman were to freeze her eggs at the age of 25, the eggs would be destroyed at the age of 35 before she might have considered starting a family.
She may also discover that she is infertile at the age of 37 and is advised to use donor eggs at a different price at this point.
But if a woman waited at the age of 35 to freeze her eggs, her fertility would already deteriorate, making the process less successful.
The British fertility regulator, the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority, said the & # 39; time might be good & # 39; to look at changing the current law.
Figures show that there were more than 1,400 fertility cycles with frozen eggs in 2017 – nearly seven times higher than the 234 in 2010.
Frozen eggs are stored in tanks with liquid nitrogen as soon as they are collected and thawed when needed.
Sharon Jones, who decided to freeze her eggs more than a year ago, said there was & # 39; really no need & # 39; is at the limit of 10 years.
She said to the BBC: & The longer you wait, the longer you give yourself to meet someone. But the sooner you do it, the greater the chance that the eggs will be viable. & # 39;
The 35-year-old HR manager said she was left with a & # 39; real mystery & # 39; in making the decision to freeze her eggs, which cost her £ 5,000.
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