Building Protection for Transgender Individuals

Egg and Sperm Freezing

Most of the discussion about benefits of egg freezing centers around women who are facing cancer treatment that could potentially destroy their fertility or around women who want to electively freeze their eggs. However, transgender men and women are another group that can benefit from the advances in egg freezing technology.

According to Samuel Pang, M.D., the medical director of Reproductive Science Center (RSC) of New England, transgender individuals are coming out and transitioning earlier in their lives. When transitioning male-to-female, the hormonal treatment is likely to cause suppression of sperm development. In addition, the hormonal treatments in a femaile-to-male transition have the potential to harm fertility. 

In the past the coming out and gender transitioning were often done later later in life, after an individual had a chance to have children through normal heterosexual relationships. When the transition is done earlier, having children is often not at the top of the individual's mind. Therefore, it is important to plan ahead.

Transgender men and women can use assisted reproductive technology to have genetic offspring if they so choose. For males transitioning to females, sperm can be collected, frozen and stored at a sperm bank. For females transitioning to males, eggs can be retrieved, frozen and stored in a frozen egg bank.

"Ideally, this should be done prior to initiation of hormonal therapy," Dr. Pang says. "Alternatively, in vitro fertilization (IVF) before transitional treatment is another option for fertility preservation. IVF involves egg retrieval, insemination with sperm, followed by cryopreservation storage of resulting embryos which may be used to conceive children in future."

If you are a transgender man or woman searching for options to conceive genetic offspring in the future, FertilityAuthority can help you find the right fertility clinic to help you in your efforts. 

March 11, 2013
Posted by Leigh Ann Woodruff

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