Skip to content

    Infertility & Reproduction Health Center

    Font Size

    The Baby Dilemma: Hope in a Tank


    Although the technology is rapidly improving, egg freezing is still experimental and not widely recommended as a tool to put off having children. But I was in a deadline crunch. I hoped to have kids the regular way, but in case I couldn’t, I wanted an extension.

    Egg freezing, I soon learned, is no quick fix. I couldn’t get an appointment at the clinic for three weeks. Then, I would have to wait until the third day of my next period so they could measure my follicle-stimulating hormone and estradiol levels. If they were too high, the whole deal was off. After a “prep” month of hormone pills and blood tests, I could finally start the hormone shots. That was more than three months away! My eggs would need a walker at that rate — if I had any money left to buy one.

    The Madison Avenue clinic I chose charges $13,000 (excluding storage or IVF to implant the thawed eggs). At first, I thought no price was too high for a chance to cheat biology. But when I had to leech my life savings, it began to sink in that I was buying just that: a chance — not a fix at all.

    During my consultation, Dr. Tanmoy Mukherjee, my reproductive endocrinologist at RMA, spouted the best statistics he had: Some eggs would not survive freezing or thawing or be successfully fertilized, but the remaining embryos had a 30 percent chance of implanting.

    I rationalized that I simply needed lots of eggs, and I wrote the check. I was thrilled to finally be on the freezing fast track. But the hope was tinged with a big dose of doubt.

    Of course, there was the unsettling chance that I was infertile at this very moment. At the clinic, however, I learned that my hormone levels were normal, and I saw my ovaries on an ultrasound: They looked like cookies made with mini chocolate chips — each dark bit representing an egg. “They look good,” Mukherjee declared. With that, I left in search of folic acid. It all seemed so easy.

    Today on WebMD

    Four pregnant women standing in a row
    How much do you know about conception?
    Couple with surrogate mother
    Which one is right for you?
    couple lying in grass holding hands
    Why Dad's health matters.
    couple viewing positive pregnancy test
    6 ways to improve your chances.
    Which Treatment Is Right For You
    Conception Myths
    eddleman prepare your body pregnancy
    Charting Your Fertility Cycle
    Fertility Specialist
    Understanding Fertility Symptoms
    invitro fertilization

    WebMD Special Sections