BACKGROUND: Ovarian tissue cryopreservation is increasing as a preferred option for fertility preservation for prepubertal and young adolescent females facing a fertility threatening diagnosis or treatment. DATA SOURCES: Ovid MEDLINE and PubMed searches for terms related to ovarian tissue removal for fertility preservation revealed there is no current consensus on operative technique for surgical ovarian cortical tissue removal in adult females. Additionally, there are limited published reports of surgical approach and outcomes in the pediatric population. In total, 22 publications were reviewed for their operative approach, ovarian tissue harvesting techniques, complications and outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Reported operative approaches and techniques for ovarian tissue cryopreservation for pediatric and adolescent patients are variable. Further investigations into operative technique and tissue harvesting that maintains healthy ovarian follicles for transplant will help establish standard technical principles for surgery in pediatric and adolescent females undergoing fertility preservation.