Freeze your eggs before you are 25, top pharmaceutical boss tells women – and she’s told her 22-year-old daughter the same thing
Women should consider saving their eggs before the age of 25 in case of problems during pregnancy, according to the British boss of pharmaceutical giant Merck Healthcare.
Doina Ionescu, director of the German drugs group in Britain and Ireland since 2020, said she encourages her 22-year-old daughter Maria to freeze her eggs and would advise any young woman to do the same.
In an exclusive interview with the Mail on Sunday, Ms Ionescu, 57, said: ‘Awareness of fertility starts with education and it is clear that the younger you are, the more likely you are to have a healthy child. I encourage my 22 year old daughter to save her eggs before age 25. The age of the eggs is really crucial.’
She added that men “just like young women need education” about the importance of thinking about fertility in your twenties. Ionescu said she regretted putting off starting a family until her 30s to focus on her career.
‘I have personal experience. I have a daughter. “I would have liked to have had more and been younger when I had her,” she said. ‘When I was twenty I wanted to have a career, I didn’t want to have a child.’
Doina Ionescu has told the Mail on Sunday that women should consider saving their eggs before the age of 25 in case of problems conceiving
Ms Ionescu, 57, said in an exclusive interview: ‘Fertility awareness starts with education and it is clear that the younger you are, the more likely you are to have a healthy child (file image)
She said that in the 1980s and 1990s, she and other ambitious women in her age group were “so driven by professional achievement.”
“I put off having a child until I was 30 and then I struggled a bit,” she says.
‘This generation is much more aware than I am.’
According to the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority, egg retention increased by 64 percent between 2019 and 2021.
The average cost of egg freezing is £5,000, plus £300 annual storage costs.
Thawing, fertilizing and implanting it before pregnancy will cost at least another £5,000 – and success is not guaranteed.
Research also shows that few women use their frozen eggs. Those who do may have a lower chance of becoming pregnant depending on their age at the time of frostbite.
Egg banking is not normally available on the NHS unless women are undergoing medical treatment that could affect their fertility, for example for cancer.
Merck is launching a scheme this month to pay for the fertility treatments of its staff in Britain.