British scientists say they have developed a surgical procedure that can delay menopause for up to 20 years, a potentially life-changing breakthrough for millions of women. Menopause can trigger symptoms including anxiety, hot flashes, a reduced sex drive, and in extreme cases, heart disease and bone-weakening osteoporosis. The procedure—offered only to women under 40—starts with a 30-minute operation in which tissue is removed from the patient’s ovaries. The sample is then frozen at minus 238 degrees Fahrenheit. When the patient begins menopause, the tissue is thawed and grafted back into the body—triggering the release of hormones that put menopause on hold. Ten women in the U.K. have undergone the initial procedure; one had the regraft immediately because she was having a hysterectomy and wanted to avoid premature menopause. “Being able to delay menopause has been life-changing,” Dixie-Louise Dexter, 33, tells The Times (U.K.). How long the procedure holds off menopause depends on a patient’s age when the tissue is extracted: Tissue from a 25-year-old could postpone menopause by 20 years, while a sample from a 40-year-old might delay its onset by five years. A similar procedure has been used to preserve fertility in girls and women who are receiving treatment for cancer.