October 20, 2014 — Apple and Facebook's decision to "include egg freezing in their benefits packages" spurred debate "over egg freezing's role in women's careers," but "there has been less talk about the still serious limitations of the medical procedure," author Sarah Richards writes in a New York Times opinion piece.
Richards notes that amid all the reactions to the decision, "[w]e are forgetting an essential fact: Egg freezing isn't going to work for all women." According to Richards, the procedure's success rate "varies according to the expertise of doctors and the quality of eggs, but even the best fertility centers report that a woman's chance of pregnancy per embryo transferred to the uterus is between 30 and 50 percent."
Further, she notes that while the "American Society for Reproductive Medicine removed the experimental label from the procedure in 2012, [it] still doesn't recommend it to healthy women who simply want to delay childbearing."
While Richards believes that women "should take advantage of every opportunity to freeze" their eggs if they "are anxious to preserve their fertility" and that more companies will likely "follow Facebook and Apple's example," she cautions that women "should never forget" the procedure's "power to disappoint" (Richards, New York Times, 10/16).