IVF or In Vitro Fertilization is a method of fertilizing eggs along with the sperm outside the body in an incubator and then placing the embryo back in the uterus of the woman. The process has been around for about four decades and has helped innumerable couples enjoy parenthood. Here is a basic understanding of the IVF process step-by-step :
The specialist analyses your condition and determines the best form of IVF treatment. There are two methods, IVF with pituitary suppression before beginning the stimulation and pituitary suppression after the stimulation begins.
This is the stage where the fertility expert stimulates ovaries with medication, administered through injections for 9 to 14 days. The response is monitored with blood tests and ultrasounds.
An injection by the name of human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (hCG) is administered, which helps in the maturity of the egg and allows it to detach from follicle wall.
Egg retrieval and semen collection – This process requires mild sedation of women. The egg retrieval is done 34 to 36 hours after the hCG injection is administered. On the same day, the semen of the partner is also collected, or sometimes frozen semen of the partner is kept.
The sperm and eggs are placed in an incubator overnight and checked for fertilization the next day. About 70% to 80% of eggs fertilize if the sperm of the partner is normal. Experts will contact the patients to discuss more options for sperm treatment/collection if there is a problem in the sperm sample.
If there are no complications in the egg fertilization, then embryo transfer is performed within two to five days from date of Ovum Pick Up. It is a painless process and takes just a few minutes.
This is an important phase for the patient and lasts for two weeks. They must listen to the advice of their fertility expert and take care of themselves. Patients may feel nauseated, tired, and bloated, while some may also experience bleeding or vaginal spotting. They must get in touch with their fertility expert.
A pregnancy blood test is performed 14 days after the embryo is placed in the uterus. This is an important time for couples.
IVF treatments may take time, and not all women may conceive in the first attempt. You must not give up hope and trust your IVF treatment expert.