May 23, 2024
5 Minutes

Egg Retrieval Recovery: What to expect

Egg Retrieval Recovery: What to expect
Written by
Navya Muralidhar
MSc Clinical Embryology & Embryologist
Amilis makes fertility digestible, accessible, and affordable to help you take charge of your reproductive health and live on your own timeline.

In an eggshell...

  • You might experience pain, bloating and constipation - side effects that can be resolved with the right care.
  • Make sure you rest for at least 24-48 hours after the procedure, and avoid any strenuous activity to allow your body to heal. You can resume sexual activity a week or two post recovery.
  • Have a balanced and nutrient rich diet alongside electrolyte rich beverages, and avoid coffee.

Let’s face it: Completing your egg retrieval deserves a special trophy on its own 🏆 

All those fertility medications, checkups, and ultrasounds, all leading up to this moment when they finally take your mature eggs and give them their space to hibernate. 

While the egg retrieval process is a short procedure of about 15-30 minutes where you’ll be fast asleep (thanks to anaesthesia 😴),  just like any other medical procedure, it comes with its small baggage of minor discomfort and side effects.

Some women could be going back to work the next day, and some might have light cramping. For some, it’s just the calm before the storm of fatigue and bloating arrives. 

Ultimately, the symptoms differ for all. But regardless of it all, we at Amilis decided to curate a checklist of all the things you need to look out for during your recovery post-egg freezing.

Ready? Take out your checklist or notes app 📝 and jot these down! 

6 Essential Tips for Recovery After Egg Retrieval

1. Prioritise rest and relaxation

Going through an egg-freezing cycle isn’t an easy task! Your body has been through a lot over the past few weeks. Prioritise rest for at least 24-48 hours after the retrieval. And we mean: taking time to relax, catch up on some much-needed sleep, Netflix and binge, and avoid strenuous activities. Let your body focus on healing and recovery.

2. Hydration is key

Drink plenty of fluids, especially water and electrolyte-rich beverages, to help your body replenish fluids lost during the procedure and prevent dehydration. Aim for 8-10 glasses of water throughout the day.

3. Fighting constipation

Now, here’s the thing that isn’t talked about much 🫣 Certain medications used during the retrieval process and reduced physical activity recommended during the stimulation stage can lead to constipation. Here are some tips to combat it:

  • Increase your fibre intake: Focus on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to promote bowel regularity.
  • Stay hydrated: As mentioned earlier, adequate water intake keeps things moving smoothly.
  • Consider a gentle stool softener: Constipation still giving you a hard time? Discuss options with your doctor if constipation persists

4. Low-Intensity workouts.

While vigorous exercise is best avoided for a week or two at the most, gentle movement can be beneficial. Opt for light walks, yoga, low impact workout for stretching to promote circulation and aid recovery. At this stage, it’s best to listen to your body and avoid any activity that causes pain.

5. Heating Pads and Pain Relief

Mild cramping and discomfort are quite common after egg retrieval. You can apply a heating pad to your lower abdomen for 15-20 minutes at a time to ease discomfort. Your doctor might also prescribe pain medication - but it’s best to use it as directed.

6. Nourish Your Body with Healthy Foods

Food is one of the major elements that fuels your recovery. Eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein will give your body the essential nutrients it needs to heal. Avoid processed foods, excessive sugar, and caffeine, which might contribute to bloating.

Common FAQs About Egg Retrieval Recovery, Answered by Experts

How can I speed up recovery after egg retrieval?

Rest, hydration and healthy food. Along with the recovery tips mentioned above, including low-intensity exercises, increasing fibre intake and using heating pads to combat any cramps and discomfort can help speed up the recovery process. 

How many days should I rest after egg retrieval?

Plan on resting for at least 24-48 hours after the procedure. Gradually increase your activity level as you feel comfortable, but avoid strenuous activities for at least a week.

What should you eat after egg retrieval?

Focus on a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. On the fluid end, stay hydrated with water and electrolyte-rich beverages. Avoid processed foods, sugary beverages, and caffeine.

How to make bloating go away after egg retrieval?

Unfortunately, bloating is a common post-retrieval symptom. While we know how discomforting it can get, some ways to alleviate it include drinking plenty of water, avoiding gassy foods, and light exercise. If it persists for several days, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider. 

Can I travel after egg retrieval?

“Generally, we don’t recommend travelling long distances, by road or air right after the procedure,” says Navya Muralidhar. This is to ensure that you take adequate rest after the procedure and avoid increased blood clot risk due to long hours of sitting in the same place while travelling.   

Can I have sex after egg retrieval?

It’s best to resume sexual activity a week or two after egg retrieval. This is to ensure that you get enough pelvic rest after the retrieval procedure. This also helps your body heal and prevent any infection.

Amilis: Your guide to the egg freezing process from start to end

Typically, post-egg retrieval is when the doctor appointments, the nurse’s questions and the injections all come to a stop 🛑 

And the next stage, where you rest, recover and get back to normal routine starts. 

If you happen to face the symptoms that come with the “after” part of egg retrieval, know that this is the time when tips and tricks for recovery come handy -  if you sense that you are still feeling unwell, reach out to your egg freezing treatment provider to rule out any unwanted side effects or serious conditions. 

At Amilis, our team is dedicated to simplify the egg-freezing process for you from start to end. Be it cutting down or costs or finding the best egg-freezing clinic in the UK, we’re a one-stop resource hub for it all.

And at every stage of your egg-freezing cycle, we’re there with a support team, educational resources and one call away for any questions that you may have.

We wish you a safe and speedy recovery process. You’ve got this ❤️

Written by
Navya Muralidhar
MSc Clinical Embryology & Embryologist

An embryologist by degree, and an educator by heart, Navya has completed her Bachelors in Genetics, and her Masters in Embryology and now strives to deconstruct the complex, into educational and informative articles surrounding her field of interest. She's specifically focused on time-lapse technology, IVM, and pre-implantation genetics. When not writing, you can find her at her favourite or newest coffee shop in town, sketching away, or listening to a podcast.