Isn’t it amazing – two people struggling to have a child can start a family in a Petri dish, where eggs are fertilized by sperm in a test tube, outside the body.
In-vitro fertilization or IVF is an effective Assisted Reproductive Technique [ART] to solve infertility issues.
A study by Hindustan Times reveals that around 20 million couples in India suffer from infertility.
But what exactly is IVF procedure, and how can it help solve the issues of infertility?
As per World Health Organization [ WHO], when a couple fails to conceive even after one year of unprotected intercourse, it is defined as infertility.
In the IVF technique, an egg is combined with sperm outside of a woman’s body – “in glass.” The technique involves retrieving the eggs from a woman’s ovaries and fertilizing them with sperm. After that, the fertilized egg or embryo is transferred to the woman’s uterus.
Read on to know all about the IVF procedure and how it can be helpful in solving infertility issues.
Step by step IVF procedure: :
Step one: Ovarian stimulation :
Ovarian stimulation is used to mature multiple eggs for egg retrieval. An average of 10-20 eggs are usually retrieved for IVF.
Step two: Egg retrieval :
Under the egg retrieval process, you will be given sedation medications. An ultrasound probe can be inserted into your vagina to identify fertilized eggs. Then they are removed from follicles with needles.
Step three: Fertilization :
After egg retrieval, the eggs are fertilized with sperm. Your IVF specialist can use conventional insemination or Intra-cytoplasm Injection [ ICSI] for fertilization. In conventional methods, sperm are placed in a small petri-dish. In ICSI, sperm is injected using a needle and a microscope to check the fertilization.
Step four: Embryo transfer:
After the eggs are fertilized, the embryo is selected for the transfer and placed inside a thin plastic catheter (a soft tube). The catheter is passed through the cervix and gently inserted into the uterus.
Step 5: Pregnancy test:
About 12 days after an embryo transfer, you will have a pregnancy test. If a pregnancy is confirmed, additional blood tests and ultrasounds are done to confirm viability.
How can IVF solve various infertility issues?:
IVF is among the best Assisted Reproductive Techniques [ ART] to solve various infertility issues in men and women. Read on to know in detail about these issues:
How does IVF solve the infertility issue associated with fallopian tube blockage?:
Fallopian tubes are female reproductive organs connecting ovaries and uterus. These are the passageways for the egg to enter the uterus.
However, if the fallopian tubes are blocked, the passage for sperm to get to the egg gets blocked. Your tubes can be partially or fully blocked. Blocked fallopian tubes can aggravate the chances of ectopic pregnancy [ where fertilized egg implants outside uterus].
IVF can be a suitable treatment for fallopian tube damage. In IVF, your egg does not need to be picked up by the fallopian tube, but is directly collected from the ovary and fertilized in a lab, before transferring the embryo to the uterus. In this way, any problem in the fallopian tubes gets bypassed. This can also improve your chances of pregnancy.
How can IVF help resolve the infertility issues caused due to endometriosis:
In endometriosis, endometrial tissues grow outside of the uterus. Further, these tissues can create cysts or scarring. It can ultimately disrupt ovulation and make it difficult for a woman to conceive. Between 35-50% of women with this condition have difficulty conceiving.
IVF is a suitable treatment for women suffering from endometriosis. In IVF, women undergo ovarian stimulation. The eggs are collected and fertilized with sperm in a laboratory setting. Then both eggs and sperm are evaluated for several days to select the healthy embryos for embryo transfer.
How does IVF help with low sperm count infertility issues?:
While it only takes one sperm to fertilize an egg, the journey of fertilization can be tough.
Low sperm count also known as oligospermia can be a major cause of infertility. Your sperm count is low if it dips below 15 million. It can make it difficult for you and your partner to conceive.
Hence, in case of low sperm count, IVF can be a better option. Sperm with poor motility can still fertilize eggs through IVF. By placing sperm and egg in close proximity in a petri dish, the poorly motile sperm do not have to travel far to reach the egg. Hence, pregnancy can be made possible.
Does IVF help in cases of infertility due to unexplained infertility?:
In unexplained infertility, it can be difficult to find the exact cause of not conceiving. Unexplained infertility affects nearly 15 to 30% of couples seeking fertility issues. Though the causes of infertility are unknown, it can occur due to ovulation problems, poor egg or sperm quality.
IVF works extremely well to solve the issue of unexplained infertility. With this procedure, an IVF specialist can determine if there is a problem with sperm getting to the egg or the sperm and egg interaction.
After identifying the cause, an IVF specialist starts your IVF treatment.
How can IVF help in overcoming infertility issues due to poor egg quality?:
The quality of a woman’s egg indicates how well prepared she is to produce healthy embryos. For that, the eggs need to have appropriate chromosomes and an ability to get combined with sperm.
However, bad quality eggs can alter the reproductive process and can cause abnormal pregnancies. Therefore, IVF is an ideal procedure for women with poor egg quality.
Firstly, a blood test to measure a patient’s follicle stimulating hormone can be performed to obtain data on ovarian response. It further estimates your egg quality. Only, after that the process is started.
IVF technique aims to extract multiple eggs with the hope that some of them will reach the required quality.
The fertility treatment involves a couple undergoing multiple steps. Though the procedure may seem overwhelming at first, with proper guidance and accurate treatment, you can get happy outcomes.We at Vardaan Medical Center have successfully treated couples suffering from infertility issues. Our latest reproductive techniques have made it possible for several couples to enjoy the bliss of parenthood. You can read our blog on fertility success stories to know more about it.
Vardaan Medical Center: Best IVF Center in Punjab:
At Vardaan Medical Center, we cater to the fertility needs of all patients. We are among the best IVF centers in Punjab as we offer the most-advanced IVF treatment. Our IVF specialists have extensive experience in handling all kinds of infertility cases.
Contact us today!
Frequently Asked Question
How long does an IVF procedure take?
The IVF procedure usually takes around four weeks. However, it may vary from couple to couple as the duration of IVF depends mainly on the health of the couple and the cause of infertility.
How many times can a person try for IVF?
The number of times you can try IVF depends on various parameters including, age, cause of infertility, or previous response to IVF cycle. In most cases, IVF can be attempted for three to four times.
What should be the ideal gap period between two unsuccessful IVF cycles?
What should be the ideal gap period between two unsuccessful IVF cycles?