What is IVF?
IVF, or in vitro fertilization, is a fertility treatment that is performed to increase the chances of a successful pregnancy. It involves the combination of a woman’s eggs with her partner’s sperm. When it is completed, the result is an embryo that is transferred to the uterus.
There are several factors that determine a person’s chances of a successful IVF. Age, gender selection, the quality of the donor’s sperm, the health of the uterus and fallopian tubes, and the cause of infertility are all important. The doctor will review each of these factors with the patient. In addition to assessing the risks of pregnancy, the physician will also monitor the development of the fetus.
While there are no guarantees, the likelihood of a successful pregnancy is higher if the woman is in good health and the eggs are of high quality. If there are structural problems with the uterus, surgery may be needed. Moreover, if there are chromosomal defects in the embryo, genetic testing will be performed to help ensure a healthy pregnancy.
Most treatment centers recommend one full menstrual cycle between IVF cycles. However, there are exceptions. For instance, if the intended mother is on birth control, she should take it while taking medications and supplements that stimulate the ovaries. This helps the lining of the uterus to thicken.
Once a woman is pregnant, she will continue taking progesterone for several weeks. Progesterone has been proven to help the embryo grow and survive in the uterus. As such, it can be prescribed to women for eight to ten weeks.
Although there are no guarantees, IVF can be effective for women with recurrent miscarriages or age related infertility. It can also be helpful for sexually and gender diverse individuals. Additionally, some people opt to use donor eggs or sperm.
During the first IVF cycle, the woman will be given a series of injections to stimulate the ovaries. She will be tested for certain infectious diseases, and she will undergo an ultrasound. After the process is complete, she will return to the clinic for a blood pregnancy test. Depending on the results, she will be released to obstetrician care.
During an IVF procedure, a woman has several ultrasounds, and the IVF doctor or a team of specialists will assess the uterus for possible complications. A blood test will be done to measure the hCG hormone. This test is much more accurate than a home pregnancy test.
If the woman’s partner has a serious genetic disorder, he may be advised to use donor sperm or eggs. Alternatively, the eggs may be frozen before fertilization. These extra embryos can then be used for future IVF cycles.
During the IVF process, there are a variety of emotional and physical side effects. These range from minor breast tenderness to ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Some people experience depression or anxiety. Those suffering from these symptoms should seek support from a family member or a counselor. Other patients feel a sense of support in online communities.