Lab technicians looking through microscopes

Our team is happy to announce that our state-of-the-art egg-freezing laboratory is fully operational, utilizing the most advanced and successful form of vitrification available: the Cryotec method! You might have some questions about what that actually means—so we’ll try to answer them here.

What’s Cryotec?

The Cryotec method was developed by Dr. Masashige Kuwayama, long considered the foremost authority on vitrification (and named Embryologist of the Year by the American College of Embryology in 2015). It consists of a specific set of strict protocols (meaning, the procedure that the lab team uses to freeze the eggs).

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“The Cryotec process is superior to its slower predecessors, which introduced more opportunities for errors that can destroy the viability of stored eggs by damaging their cellular structure,” our embryologist and lab assistant director Dr. Leslie Ramirez explains. Dr. Ramirez studied in Japan with Dr. Kuwayama to perfect her technique, and Extend Fertility is now Dr. Kuwayama’s east coast representative Cryotec laboratory—meaning that, before any other cryogenic lab is permitted to use this method, their embryologists must train with Dr. Ramirez here. (So yea, she’s pretty great.)

How is Cryotec different from vitrification?

We’ve discussed before the two methods for egg cryopreservation, or freezing: slow freezing and vitrification, the latter of which is a much more effective form of “flash freezing” that reduces the chance that damaging ice crystals will form inside the egg. There’s significant evidence that vitrification is a superior method, with studies indicating egg survival rates (meaning the percentage of eggs that are still viable after they’re thawed) increase from 61% with slow freezing to 91% with vitrification. Still, not every lab uses this more advanced technique. (We do, of course.)

The Cryotec process is an even more successful form of vitrification, increasing the egg survival rate to closer to 100%. Think of it as the Rolls Royce of egg freezing methods.

What’s special about this new lab?

Our lab has been specially designed to support effective egg freezing in the cleanest, safest environment possible.

  • We’ve installed a unique air handling system in the lab to remove potentially harmful particulates.
  • We’ve implemented temperature controls on all lab surfaces to keep them at 37ºC (normal body temperature), to maintain egg quality.
  • Our lab’s custom design, developed with Dr. Ramirez’s oversight, ensures optimal lab workflow for egg freezing procedures.

All of these regulations help us near our goal of 100% egg survival. No eggs left behind.

Why is this important?

We think egg freezing can be a game changer for women—that’s why we’re aiming to make it accessible to more women than ever before, with personalized, flexible care, affordable pricing, and financing options. But the most important factor in whether or not egg freezing gives women more options is how effective it is. That’s why clinical and laboratory excellence has always been at the forefront of Extend Fertility, as we build our team and as we build our facilities.

Still want to learn more? Contact us.