Want to get pregnant but can’t?
Tried every other treatment but still can’t conceive?
Many couples now choose Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) in order to conceive a child. However, not everyone knows all about this form of fertility treatment. In this blog, we’ll talk about in vitro fertilization (IVF), one of the most common assisted reproduction methods.
In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a type of assisted reproduction in which a man’s sperm and a woman’s eggs are combined outside of the body in a laboratory dish. The resulting embryo is then transferred back into the womb.
IVF has been used as an infertility treatment for more than three decades. Today, it’s one of the most common and effective treatments for infertility. It is typically used when other treatments like intrauterine insemination (IUI), artificial insemination (AI), and in vitro sperm injection (IVSI) have failed.
The entire process can take up to several weeks, depending on how many embryos are being transferred back into your uterus at one time. Here are the steps involved in the procedure.
This is the first step of your IVF cycle. FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone) injections are given to stimulate the production of several follicles in your ovaries, which contain developing eggs. In order to monitor the development of these follicles, ultrasounds will be used during this time period.
Egg retrieval is performed under sedation, either by local anesthesia or general anesthesia. The doctor uses ultrasound-guided transvaginal ultrasound to locate mature follicles in the ovary and then performs an aspiration of the follicle using a needle inserted through the vaginal wall into the ovary.
In this procedure, a small amount of fluid is removed from the man’s testicles by means of a needle that passes through the scrotum. This fluid is then used to fertilize the woman’s eggs during in vitro fertilization (IVF). The sperm retrieval process can be done on an outpatient basis using local anesthesia.
The sperm and egg are mixed together in a laboratory dish to see if they will combine properly. This usually happens within 12 hours after the sperm are retrieved from your partner’s testicles (the male reproductive glands). If this step doesn’t work right away, another attempt may be made 24 hours later — sometimes even two days later — because some eggs don’t respond immediately to being mixed with sperm.
The embryo transfer is the final step in the IVF process. The embryos have been growing in an incubator for five to seven days after fertilization. At this point, they’re ready to be transferred into your uterus. Your doctor will use a thin catheter (tube) inserted through your vagina and cervix into your uterus. The catheter will carry one or two embryos that were frozen and thawed for this procedure. Once the embryos are inside your uterus, they can start developing into babies.
While the success rate of IVF is much higher today compared to just a decade back, there still exist risks and complications. So, it’s important that if you’re indeed moving on this route, you must talk to your doctor and get all the questions answered. Understand the entire procedure up and close; understand the risks. After having all the information, make your decision and plan accordingly.