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Research

Freezing Part of Ovaries can Delay Menopause: UK Company

A medical procedure that has been previously used to preserve ovaries and prevent tissue damage in the uterus has now been revamped to serve a new purpose. “Ovarian tissue cryopreservation” is a procedure first used in the 90s on young girls and women. Now it is being used by a UK company on women to delay menopause for up to 20 years.

Usually, it was performed before treatments that can be detrimental to tissue, such as chemotherapy or radiation treatment. Doctors would extract a part of the ovaries and freeze them. This tissue can be put back in the future the women choose to have children.

The same procedure used differently

For women who want to delay menopause, a UK based company called ProFam is offering this same procedure. Women up to the age of 40 who are experiencing falling reproductive hormones can benefit from this. For women, along with menopause, comes uncomfortable symptoms such as mood swings and hot flashes. In some cases, more severe issues can also develop, such as some heart conditions.

This procedure costs about 7,000 to 11,000 pound sterling ($8,500 to $13,300). It requires women to have some tissue from their ovaries taken out and frozen. It is then replanted once the women turn 40 to reactivate their reproductive system. Their hormonal glands start producing high levels of the reproductive hormones.

Different aspects of the procedure affect the delay of menopause

After this happens, the length of the delay and effectiveness of the procedure depends entirely on how old the woman was when the ovary tissue was first extracted.

The younger the patient when the tissue was taken, the longer the delay of menopause. If the tissue is taken from an older woman, then the delay may only be for a few years, says the Guardian.

A medical analysis of this revamped procedure

However, according to Dr. Kutluk Oktay, the first surgeon to successfully perform an ovarian transplant through this procedure, the process of delaying menopause through ovarian tissue cryopreservation is very speculative. The exact results of this procedure are not certain and may vary from participant to participant.

Furthermore, it is not clear how much tissue is required for this procedure to be successful, says Dr. Oktay. He also pointed out that by removing amounts of tissue, the reproductive window of the woman also decreases. When replanted, the tissue is no longer fresh and has lost at least half of the follicles present, reducing fertility when the tissue is put back. What comes out is not necessarily the same when it goes back in.

There is no downside to this procedure for patients who are suffering from diseases such as cancer because the tissue will be lost either way. However, for healthy patients, there is the risk of losing fresh tissue and reduced fertility rates.

Scientists must do more research and conduct more studies in order to clarify and determine a more efficient and precise method of delaying menopause. The procedure should also minimize the risks that are currently involved for younger women.

 

 

Samuel Mayer

Samuel has been part of Top Health Journal for quite a while now. He has immense interest in medicine and thoroughly enjoys writing about this theme. His philosophy is: write simple and short, always assuming your reader to be a layman who knows nothing about the topic. Twitter- @SamuelM54534849

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