The Importance Of Fertility Preservation With Dr. Surrey

Widely considered one of the top fertility experts in the field, Dr. Mark Surrey has been in practice for over 25 years. He is a board-certified reproductive and endoscopic surgeon and serves as a clinical professor in the Department of OBGYN at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. He was elected President of the American Laparoscopy Society & Pacific Coast Reproductive Society and is a Clinical Director of Fellowship Training for UCLA & Cedars Sinai Reproductive Endocrinology. Also a founding member of The Society of Reproductive Surgeons. Dr. Surrey is a yearly recipient of the leading research contributions for ASRM. Furthermore, he is the associate director at the Southern California Reproductive Center, a clinic he co-founded. Haute MD expert Dr. Mark Surrey discusses fertility preservation which is done by freezing eggs or sperm to preserve them for later use.

Dr. SurreyPhoto Credit: ShutterstockHaute MD: What is fertility preservation?

It is preserving one's fertility in the present for the future. In short, it means freezing eggs or sperm at a time when the body still produces good quantity and quality and preserves them for a later point in life via the process of vitrification.

Haute MD: Why should you freeze your eggs?

Because eggs are exponentially losing their quality as we age as evidenced by their genetics. Because the eggs are better now than they will be in the future and if you are considering starting a family later in life it will be advisable to preserve eggs when they are still the healthiest. Having your eggs preserved can buy you extra time to start a family for when you are actually ready for a baby.

Haute MD: Why should you freeze sperm?

For the same reason, a woman should freeze her eggs. It is less compelling because men continue to make new sperm continuously, but the quality of sperm declines with age and it, therefore, is advisable for men looking to start a family at a later point as well.

fertility preservationPhoto Credit: ShutterstockHaute MD: Besides egg and sperm freezing, are there additional options to preserve your fertility?

Yes, there is. The freezing of embryos is the best option as the preservation of genetically tested embryos will produce the best outcomes.

Haute MD: Who is a good candidate?

Anybody who is healthy and producing healthy eggs and sperm. Younger female patients tend to have a great success rate, but I have patients in their early 40s, who produce more eggs than some women much younger. If fertility preservation is something you are considering, I recommend a consultation to establish, if you are a good candidate.

Haute MD: When should you begin preserving your fertility?

Ideally, women should begin preserving their fertility in their late 20s and early 30s. I do, however, have plenty of patients in their early/mid-40s, who successfully froze 8-12 healthy eggs. Generally speaking, younger age means more healthy eggs, so if egg freezing is an investment you’d want to make into your future, consider doing so rather sooner than later.