The controversy surrounding human egg banks
Women who want to postpone pregnancy can now make use of the egg bank facilities that are available in some hospitals in Malaysia.
This type of medical service is available for women who are undergoing cancer treatment but would still want to enjoy the joys of motherhood in the future. So when this started, it was purely for medical reasons. However, egg-freezing is fast becoming a trend among career-oriented women.
Since a woman's fertile years coincide with the time when she is at the top of her career, many women choose to make use of egg banks. Egg cells can be stored in these facilities until the time when these women decide to get on with their pregnancy. This is definitely a big breakthrough in the medical field. Although egg freezing has already been available in Singapore for more than a decade, there are still many who are speculating on the several implications brought about by this technology.
Critics acknowledge that when used by women undergoing cancer treatment, this technology brings up no controversy. Women undergoing cancer treatment show a much higher rate of recovery if they can still see the possibility of bearing children in the future. However, when this technology is used for non-medical reasons, then lots of questions arise.
Many experts do not encourage women to use the services of egg banks for social reasons. But they acknowledge that there may be a need for this kind of service in the future. Some of the questions raised regarding this technology is its effect on the values of modern women. Will it be safe and healthy for "old" mothers to still raise children? Some people think that it will really be challenging for older women to cope with the needs of their small children considering that they have less stamina.
Another concern that is raised about this technology is its effect on collective values and culture, especially for societies in Asia and most specifically Singapore. We are aware that almost all Asian societies are very traditional and conservative.
The concerns that I enumerated above are just some of issues that were raised concerning this technology. But I think that the most important issue that must be taken into consideration are the risks and dangers involved. Since this technology is very new and literally still in a very gray area, nobody can really give a confirmation of its success rate. Critics say that it is difficult to give people hope when truly there is none.
What do you think of egg-freezing? Is this something that our society needs? Is it acceptable for women to use this technology for social reasons?