What You Need to Know About Egg Quality and Testing

If you’re a woman who has been focused on her career but eventually wants to start a family, or are concerned about the state of your fertility after undergoing cancer treatments, you may want to consider freezing or donating your eggs. 

But how can you know if your eggs are of good quality to produce a healthy pregnancy and child? Here are a few ways that Dr. Andrew L. Loucopoulos, a reproductive specialist located in New York, New York, conducts testing to determine the quality of your eggs.

What egg quality means

When doctors refer to “egg quality,” they are talking about the likelihood of the egg developing into a healthy embryo and successfully implanting in your uterus. “Egg quality” is either “euploid” (normal) or “aneuploidy” (abornormal). 

Healthy eggs have 23 chromosomes, and should have a total of 46 chromosomes when fertilized with sperm. Eggs with too many or too few chromosomes can result in chromosomal disorders, such as Down Syndrome.

The quality of a woman’s eggs decreases as she gets older. Conception that occurs with aneuploidy eggs can cause the resulting embryo to inherit abnormal amounts of chromosomes, result in a miscarriage, or fail to implant in the uterus altogether.

Determining egg quality

While they may say, “age ain’t nothing but a number,” age does matter when it comes to egg quality. The younger the woman, the healthier her eggs. By the age of 25, it is estimated that 75% of most women’s eggs are considered “normal.” But by the time she reaches the age of 40, her eggs will have decreased in quality. The estimated percentage of chromosomally “normal” eggs is between 10%and 15%.

How eggs are tested

The simplest way to test for fertility is by a blood test, typically drawn on the third day of the menstrual cycle. Follicle stimulating hormones (FSH) and estradiol levels will be measured in the sample. High FSH levels may indicate poor egg health. Dr. Loucopoulos may recommend a transvaginal ultrasound for more invasive testing, if necessary.

All about egg quantity

Women are born with approximately 1 to 2 million eggs: all the eggs they will ever have. The number of eggs decreases with age, and only a few hundred or so will ovulate during the fertile years.

Depending on your age, your medical history, and the overall health of your ovaries, Dr. Loucopoulos can determine how well you will respond to a fertility treatment plan. Each fertility treatment is personalized to suit your unique needs. Even if your eggs have decreased in quality, it only takes one healthy egg (and healthy sperm, of course) to create a healthy embryo.

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Loucopoulos

If you would like to learn more about egg quality and testing, you can schedule a consultation by calling 917-512-8301, or book an appointment online. We look forward to helping you on your fertility journey.

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