Fertility Answers - Helping Build Families

Frozen Embryo Transfer

Frozen embryo transfer may increase IVF success rates

Our Louisiana fertility center offers cryopreservation, or freezing, of embryos to allow hopeful parents to utilize a frozen embryo transfer for a subsequent IVF cycle. This is a wonderful option for hopeful parents who have extra embryos after an IVF procedure. Thanks to advances in assisted reproductive technology (ART), transferring frozen embryos often produces higher implantation and pregnancy rates than a fresh embryo transfer.

Benefits of transferring a frozen embryo

Our Louisiana fertility center team recommends transferring frozen embryos for many reasons.

  • Timing advantages. Because frozen embryos may be stored for many years, transferring a frozen embryo allows hopeful parents to select a transfer schedule that is ideally aligned with their family-planning needs.
  • Lower hormone levels. Women who take ovarian stimulation medications can have elevated levels of certain fertility hormones at the time of a fresh embryo transfer, which could decrease the chances of the embryo implanting. It’s less likely that a woman utilizing cryopreserved embryos will experience these elevated hormone levels, as her hormones will have had time to return to normal. This can increase her odds of conceiving.
  • Receptive uterine lining. The extra period of time between an egg retrieval and transfer of a frozen embryo, allows the lining of a woman’s uterus to develop more favorable conditions for the implantation of the embryo.
  • Opportunity for genetic testing. Transferring a frozen embryo creates a better chance that the healthiest embryo will be transferred, as there is time for the embryos to undergo preimplantation genetic testing for aneuploidy (PGT-A) or preimplantation genetic testing for monogenetic disease (PGT-M).
  • Potential for a healthier baby. Recent studies have indicated that babies conceived through a cryopreserved embryo transfer have a lower chance of being underweight at birth.

As hopeful parents explore their options, our team is here to answer questions and offer support.

Requirements for transferring a frozen embryo

When a woman is preparing to transfer a frozen embryo at our Louisiana fertility center, she will need to self-administer estrogen for two weeks leading up to the transfer, which allows the uterine lining to develop. When the lining is at least 7mm thick, the hopeful mother’s progesterone level will be tested to make sure she has not ovulated. Then, the embryo is thawed and transferred to the woman’s uterus.

Many women report a preference for transferring a frozen embryo, as their body has more time to recover between the egg retrieval and the embryo transfer, which will hopefully lead to the conception of their healthy baby.

Contact us for more information about transferring frozen embryos.