Kuwait City: Increasing numbers of Kuwaiti women are turning to freeze their eggs to preserve their reproductive potential, experts have said.
“There is interest from unmarried women aged over 40 in the technique amid growing awareness that reproduction is related to the age factor,” Dr Hazem Al Rumheih, a gynecology and obstetrics consultant, told Kuwaiti newspaper Al Rai.
He added that the procedure is also used by female cancer patients who undergo chemotherapy.
“Egg freezing does not contradict the Islamic Sharia,” he said.
Dr Mai Kamel, a reproductive health specialist, explains reasons that prompt women to have their eggs frozen.
“They include suffering from genetic diseases, late marriage or the desire to postpone pregnancy due to social or employment reasons,” she told the same paper.
“The majority of women turning to this operation are aged above 30, who have gone beyond the marriage age or wish to postpone pregnancy. The procedure is simple and its risk percentage is low,” Dr Mai added.
Egg freezing, scientifically known as oocyte cryopreservation, is a procedure in which a woman’s eggs are extracted and stored for later pregnancy.
Some married women in Kuwait have also favoured the procedure, according to Dr Al Rumeih who did not give specific figures.
“For married women [in Kuwait], the husband’s approval is a condition for conducting the egg freezing operation,” he said.
The procedure costs around 5,000 Kuwaiti dinars.