Egg Freezing and Who Might Benefit

Marsha Bievre Baker pic
Marsha Bievre Baker

Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker works at the University of Southern California and holds board certification in obstetrics and gynecology. Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker’s areas of expertise include fertility preservation methods such as egg freezing.

An increasingly popular fertility preservation technique for many women is to get their eggs frozen so they can have a child at some point in the future. This technique differs from embryo cryopreservation in that just the eggs, not a fertilized embryo, are frozen. However, egg freezing still requires a large time and financial commitment, and isn’t right for everybody.

Women considering egg freezing should first determine if it aligns well with their long-term goals and needs. Some women who pursue this option have decided to focus on their career or other personal endeavors during the years when they are most fertile. In these cases, egg freezing can provide some level of fertility insurance for the future.

Women who have received a cancer diagnosis might also consider egg freezing, since certain cancer treatments, such as radiation therapy, can interfere with the ability to conceive. Other women might have family members who experienced early menopause due to genetic factors and want to preserve eggs in case they have the same experience. Finally, women who oppose embryo freezing for religious or personal reasons might consider egg freezing as an alternative. A fertility specialist can provide more information on the procedure and what it involves.

Courses of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine

American Society for Reproductive Medicine pic
American Society for Reproductive Medicine
Image: asrm.org

A graduate of the University of Chicago, Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker was on the Dean’s List and gained early acceptance to the school’s Pritzker School of Medicine. Currently a physician and a clinical instructor and fellow at the University of Southern California, Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker was recognized as the 2006 Outstanding Resident Teacher by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).

Founded in Chicago, Illinois, in 1944, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine has grown to include members in over 100 countries throughout the world. A multidisciplinary, nonprofit organization, ASRM members have experience in a wide range of specialties, from embryology and pediatrics to reproductive endocrinology, among others. Dedicated to advocacy, education, and research, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine offers its members a variety of benefits, including research grants and awards and an annual meeting.

As an additional resource, the ASRM offers a number of continuing medical education courses free for its members. Key to its learning programs are three certificate courses: andrology, embryology, and reproductive endocrinology and infertility nursing. Accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, the program features online courses designed by laboratory and clinical experts to serve as both a primer for beginners and a way for more advanced learners to expand their existing experience.

Fibroids and Fertility

Fibroids pic
Fibroids
Image: health.howstuffworks.com

Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker, a fertility specialist, serves as a clinical instructor in reproductive endocrinology and infertility at the University of Southern California’s Keck School of Medicine in Los Angeles. Dr. Marsha Bievre Baker also evaluates women at the Medical Center for a number of issues that could interfere with their ability to conceive and carry a baby, such as fibroids.

A great many women have uterine fibroids, which are noncancerous growths in the muscles of the uterus. In fact, most women will develop them at some point in their lives. Genetic factors and hormone levels may contribute to the growth of fibroids. These growths are not necessarily a major cause for concern. However, in some cases, fibroids affect the shape of the cavity of the uterus to such a degree that they interfere with fertility.

A doctor might identify fibroids in a number of ways. He or she might feel particularly large ones while performing a pelvic exam. At other times, a doctor will use an ultrasound to view the fibroids. Tests such as a hydrosonogram might also be performed to reveal more information about the fibroids, particularly in determining whether or not they might be associated with difficulty getting pregnant or causing miscarriages. If necessary, a doctor might remove the fibroids surgically, particularly if the growths are large in size. If a woman has concerns about fibroids or other factors that could affect her reproductive health or fertility, she should make an appointment with a qualified medical professional.