Extra Embryos? Choose the Option that Saves Lives- Kayla Z.

In vitro fertilization is a life-changing, amazing procedure. This technique retrieves mature eggs from a women and fertilizes them outside the body before placing the now-fertile eggs back inside the women. In this way, many infertile women, or women struggling to become pregnant, have been able to conceive a child to start their family.

To many people, this could easily be considered a miracle, and most everyone else would consider giving someone an opportunity to have a family an exceptional thing. However, what happens to the left over embryos is the real cause of debate.

After in vitro fertilization there are often embyros left over since implanting too many inside of a women at one time could lead to multiple births, sometimes as many as 8, as was the case of Nadya Suleman! There are four options to choose from when it comes to what to do with these extra embryos: Keeping them frozen in storage, donating them to someone else trying to get pregnant, destroying them, or donating them for scientific research.

Some people

menstrual-cycle
The Menstrual Cycle

would argue that using  destroying embryos or using them for research is inhumane, an equivalent to experimenting on or killing a human baby, however, that is not the case. A frozen embryo is not a human baby, simply a cell that has potential for human life. Every month in a woman’s menstrual cycle she releases an egg, a cell that also has the potential for human life. The difference is that no debates take place over the fate of this cell, whether she should pay $200 a year to keep it frozen, instead she simply washes her underwear.

 

 

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Uses for Stem Cell Research

In my opinion, allowing extra embryos to be used for stem cell research is the best choice. Embryo stem cells are the easiest to use for research because unlike cells collected from adults, they are already in their most basic form, with the ability to make any type of human tissue. With these embryonic stem cells research can be done to make better treatments for dangerous, incurable diseases and injuries and to test the new drugs that are inspired by this treatments. Additionally, stem cells can be used to grow new tissue and replace dying tissue to improve conditions such as eyesight deterioration, spinal cord injuries, strokes, large burns, heart disease, diabetes,or arthritis.

In the end, using embryos for research not only saves lives but it relieves the people involved in creating the embryo of the guilt that they would feel if they were to destroy the embryo or if they were to donate it to another family. Who knows, maybe your potential child could be used to discover the cure for cancer!

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