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More women freezing their eggs for career growth, finding the right partner

NEW YORK (Shoshana Davis/CBS News) -- More and more women are choosing to put off having a baby to pursue their career or to find the right partner. Now, new technology may be making it easier for women to hit pause on their biological clocks and start a family whenever they're ready.

This week's cover story in Bloomberg Business Week, written by Emma Rosenblum, is called "Freeze Your Eggs, Free Your Career." Rosenblum joined "CBS This Morning" along with Dr. Jamie Grifo, a pioneer in the procedure and program director at New York University's Fertility Center to discuss the practice.

Rosenblum told the co-hosts that women who are opting to freeze their eggs are in their mid-to-late 30s.

"It used to be 39. It's now down to 37 and it's just going younger and younger," she said. "It's women who generally haven't found a partner, but do want to have children eventually."

Grifo told the co-hosts that this technology is not intended to put pressure on women.

"The intent is education, so that women are empowered to make good decisions, because if you don't know the facts, you don't make the best decisions," he said. "So, do your homework and then live your life. You can't plan every piece of it."

Also, Grifo explained how the procedure is done.

"It's a lot like in vitro fertilization (IVF)... there's about a two week process of injections of medications, ultrasounds, blood tests and then a minor surgical procedure to remove the egg using ultrasound," he said. "Then the eggs are frozen for use later and thawing them at a later time allows you to have your 35-year-old or 32-year-old fertility to use when you're 40 or 42."

He also said that the procedure is "painful like in vitro fertilization is painful, but it's temporary. It's minor."

However, there are questions about the success rates. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine does not endorse egg freezing for widespread elective use, saying it may give women "false hope."

Grifo said he disagreed with that assessment.

"People have to be educated. It's highly depended on the age of the woman. It's dependent on the skills in the lab and the techniques that have been developed," said Grifo. "But, we have now approached the same success rate with egg freezing as IVF."

He said the downsides to a woman freezing their eggs are "time, energy, money and complexity."

"What does it mean knowing your eggs are in a freezer? How do you behave? Do you behave differently? Can it have a negative effect? That's what the ASRM (American Society for Reproductive Medicine) is concerned about. What if it fails and you've counted on that as your solution? And I think most women get it," he said. "They know this isn't an insurance policy, not a guarantee. It's a hope not a promise. And it's an option for women who choose it and it's an option to not be chosen as well. It's not about pressure, it's about helping people."

To see the full interview with Emma Rosenblum and Dr. Jamie Grifo, watch the video in the player above

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