Why people need to receive fertility testing before egg freezing
Fertility testing before egg freezing is an important first step of fertility preservation at our Indianapolis fertility center. This testing allows doctors to determine a person’s antral follicle count. Antral follicles are the small, unstimulated eggs. Counting them can help fertility specialists estimate the number of eggs that a person still has in their ovaries.
What can you expect from fertility testing before egg freezing?
After the initial fertility preservation consultation, patients undergo some testing. This testing consists of an ultrasound and bloodwork. In some cases, the patient also receives preconception genetic testing.
Ultrasound. The patient receives a transvaginal ultrasound as part of fertility testing before egg freezing. This ultrasound occurs on the third day of their menstrual cycle. This allows the fertility specialist to evaluate the patient’s antral follicles. A high follicle count often means the patient has a good ovarian reserve (egg supply). It also means the doctor has a better chance of retrieving multiple eggs.
Bloodwork. Testing the patient’s blood can reveal information about their ovarian reserve. It can also provide insight into their levels of reproductive hormones. The patient’s reproductive hormone levels can tell the doctor how they’ll likely respond to ovulation medication.
Preconception genetic testing. Patients with a family history of inheritable genetic conditions can benefit from genetic testing. If the test reveals certain inheritable conditions, the patient might consider preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) for their future embryos. They may also want to consider conceiving using donor eggs in the future.
The team at our Indianapolis fertility center supports patients through all aspects of fertility testing before egg freezing.
What happens if the patient has a low antral follicle count?
Ideally, the doctor will find eight or more antral follicles during the patient’s ultrasound. This number of follicles indicates that the patient will likely have a good response to ovulation medications.
If the patient’s antral follicle count is low, there are many ways our clinic can help.
Low antral follicle count. A patient has what doctors consider a low follicle count when they have three to six follicles. Because this number can change, the doctor might recommend the patient hold off on beginning the egg freezing cycle until the number is higher.
If the follicle count does not increase after a few months, the doctor may suggest the patient receive higher doses of ovarian stimulation medication during the egg freezing cycle.
Very low antral follicle count. If fertility testing before egg freezing reveals an extremely low follicle count, this could indicate the patient might need to use donor eggs when they’re ready to conceive.
The doctors at our Indianapolis fertility center are here to help patients through each step of preserving their fertility. Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.