IVF (In vitro fertilisation) is one of the many techniques available for helping couples with fertility issues have a baby, the procedure involves the fertilization of the eggs by the sperms outside the body after which the fertilized egg is transferred back into the uterus and it will go through the complete cycle pregnancy term.
The process involves three stages;
- The stimulation of multiple follicles and eggs while inside the ovaries
- Bringing out the eggs from the womb of the woman and fertilising it with the sperm of her partner (husband or donor's) so the embryo can develop
- The fertilized egg are then transferred back into her uterus
This technique is perfect for mothers who have one medical issue one the other to be able to conceive healthy babies, the first successful IVF baby was born in 1978 in England
What fertility issues can IVF help with?
1. Infertility issues
Couples going through unexplained infertility (i.e no cause was found) and other fertility issues can go through IVF although if the woman is having some anatomic problem in the uterus such as severe intrauterine adhesion such should not go for IVF. For such women full term pregnancy rate is just 20%.
2. Blocked Fallopian Tubes or Pelvic Adhesions
A woman that has a pelvic anatomy issue with blocked fallopian tubes or pelvic adhesions can try out this procedure as she has a good chances of conceiving through it. Women with tubal ligation and men who have done vasectomy reversal surgery.
3. Sperm issue
Men with low sperm count, quality and motility can have their wives go for IVF if other methods to give their sperm a boost isn;t working. With IVF, it's easy to fertilise the eggs even if the sperm quality is low since sperm meets egg directly without any wasting.
4. Old age
As a woman reaches 30 her chances of conceiving starts declining, so if a woman has been trying for years without success and she's 35 and above, IVF can still help her get pregnant.
5. Failed Intrauterine Insemination attempt
A woman can still try to conceive through IVF after trying intrauterine insemination two to four times and it failed.
6. Reduced Ovarian Reserve
If a woman has fewer eggs or the quality of her eggs are poor IVF can help her conceive. Some major tests such as FSH test, estradiol test, AMH hormone level test and antral follicle counts tests will be conducted on the eggs to determine the quality of the eggs. The result will help determine if IVF can help her conceive or she'll be needing an egg donor.
For women suffering from acute endometriosis, IVF may help.
How does IVF improves chances of conception
IVF procedure helps improve a reproductive system that is not functioning efficiently. The eggs are firstly stimulated and when the eggs are brought out, they are cultured for 3 to 5 days in a conducive lab, after the eggs are fertilised with sperm, the best and only the best are transferred back to the uterus to the best location (the middle of the uterine cavity). As for the remaining embryo, the couples can get them frozen for future use. Why IVF Sometimes Fail?
How To Know When To Give Up On IVF