Egg or embryo freezing is an empowering option for many women to retain their fertility. However, the financial cost is an important consideration when you are deciding whether to use these technologies. Costs can vary depending on location, the procedures used, and medical insurance.
What are the costs of egg freezing?
There are several costs associated with using egg freezing to conceive. First, there is the cost of an egg freezing cycle. Next, there is an annual cost to store the frozen eggs. Finally, there are costs to use frozen eggs to conceive. These include medications to prepare the uterus, warming and fertilizing the egg(s), and the embryo transfer procedure.
A 2015 study in Fertility and Sterility looked at the average costs of using egg freezing to conceive. The first step in the process is the egg freezing cycle. This includes blood tests and ultrasounds, medications, and the egg collection procedure. The study found that a single oocyte (egg) freezing cycle costs $9,261 on average, but that these costs range from $4,361 to $13,891. Also, the number of eggs collected in a single cycle can vary. Depending how many are collected per cycle, a second egg freezing cycle may be recommended.
Next, there is an annual storage cost to store the preserved oocytes. This is $300 per year on average. It can range from $100 to $1,500.
Then, there are the costs to use the frozen oocytes to become pregnant. A frozen embryo transfer cost $4,169 on average. This cost ranged from $3,275 to $13,107. However, sometimes more than one frozen embryo transfer is be needed to become pregnant.
So, what does it cost to freeze, store, and use eggs? Let’s suppose you use a single egg freezing cycle, and 5 years after egg freezing you use a single transfer cycle. On average, this would cost $14,930.
However, as women from the millennial generation reach their thirties, the demand for egg freezing is increasing. As the procedure becomes more common, the costs may decline.
Are egg freezing costs covered by health insurance?
In the United States, fertility preservation is typically not covered by medical insurance. 15 of the 50 states have legislation requiring some degree of coverage. Some high-profile companies, such as Google and Facebook, now offer egg freezing as a benefit for their employees. Additionally, some labor unions have negotiated coverage for the union health plan. Read more What Should You Expect from Your Company Regarding Egg Freezing?.
A 2018 study looked at the costs of medical egg freezing for 33 American women. All of the patients interviewed had a diagnosis of cancer, endometriosis, or another medical condition which threatened fertility. The costs not covered by insurance ranged from $1,000 to over $18,000 per egg freezing cycle. The average out-of-pocket cost was $6,966 per cycle. Insurance partially covered the costs of fertility preservation for only 24% of patients. Instead, the women cobbled together a variety of resources. These included seeking compassionate care discounts from the IVF clinics and pharmacies, using personal savings, seeking help from parents or family, and holding community fundraisers.
If you decide to pursue egg freezing, it is important to consider all of the possible costs involved. However, insurance coverage is available in some cases, particularly if you are using fertility preservation prior to chemotherapy or another medical treatment. The financial costs are an important consideration as you decide whether to use egg freezing.