The Ottawa Fertility Centre offers fertility preservation to patients for personal and medical reasons.
FERTILITY PRESERVATION FOR MEDICAL REASONS
The Ottawa Fertility Centre is keeping hope alive by offering the opportunity to freeze eggs and sperm before treatment. If you are facing a medical treatment that may affect your fertility, we may be able to help. In these circumstances, we often need to take action prior to the medical treatment. Therefore, we try to see all urgent cases within 24 hours of having received a referral from your physician. Here are some of the treatment options available:
Men and adolescent boys that have reached puberty can freeze sperm prior to their medical treatments. Consultations with a physician prior to freezing are provided to offer counselling on the process of sperm freezing, and how these frozen samples can be used in the future. We also offer services for patients admitted to hospital to have their sperm samples brought to our facility for freezing.
Egg Freezing & Embryo Freezing
Women of reproductive age can choose to freeze either their eggs or embryos. Both options require the woman to undergo the process of ovarian stimulation and egg retrieval. As this process takes time and requires coordination with the menstrual cycle, this should be discussed as early as possible to allow time to complete prior to starting their medical treatments.
Depot Lupron menstrual suppression
Women and adolescent girls that are not candidates for egg or embryo freezing have the option of injection medications to suppress their menstrual cycle during medical treatments. The benefits of this are discussed in detail at the time of consultation, and injections can be completed by one of our physicians while patients are going through their medical treatments.
After medical treatments are completed, both men and women can have testing at our centre to determine if their fertility has been affected by the medical treatment.
POWER OF HOPE PROGRAM
If you have been diagnosed with cancer and are considering the option of fertility preservation, visit the web site for Fertile Future. Fertile Future is a Canadian national non-profit organization that provides fertility preservation information and support services to cancer patients and oncology professionals.
ELECTIVE FERTILITY PRESERVATION
A woman’s best chance of becoming pregnant is prior to the age of 35. However, more and more women and men are postponing childbearing to later in life than was typical in previous generations. There are a host of reasons for this: women are delaying childbearing to complete their education, to get their careers on a solid footing, or to find the right partner with whom they want to share a family. The reasons are personal for every woman.
Egg freezing involves a process similar to in-vitro fertilization (IVF), in terms of the hormonal medications required to stimulate the production of mature eggs, and the surgical retrieval of eggs from a woman’s ovaries. These eggs are frozen using a process called vitrification and then stored in liquid nitrogen until the woman is ready to pursue a pregnancy. These eggs may be fertilized with sperm from a woman’s partner or sperm from a donor. Women aged 30 to 35 are ideal candidates for egg freezing.
Ask your doctor for a referral to the Ottawa Fertility Centre. One of our reproductive specialists will talk to you about the pros and cons of egg freezing to delay childbearing. We can review your options and at minimum, we can assess your current fertility potential so you can make informed decisions.
There are circumstances whereby a man may want to consider fertility preservation for non-medical reasons. For example, a man undergoing a vasectomy may wish to freeze his sperm as a form of insurance. Vasectomy reversals are costly and may have limited success whereas the cost of sperm freezing is modest. The reasons for wanting to freeze sperm are very personal. We will talk to you about your options.