In Vitro Fertilization

Assisted reproductive technology

Assisted reproductive technology (ART) is a reproductive technology used to treat infertility. It involves in-vitro (outside the body) fertilization and surrogacy.

Types of Assisted reproductive technology

  • In Vitro Fertilization (IVF): In this procedure matured eggs and sperms are fertilized in a laboratory. The resulting embryo is transferred to uterus
  • Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI): A single sperm is injected into the egg and it is transferred to uterus
  • Zygote intrafallopian transfer (ZIFT): This procedure is similar to IVF only difference is that embryo is transferred to fallopian tube instead of embryo. Fertilization of egg and embryo occurs in laboratory and transferred to fallopian tube
  • Gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT): Eggs are combined with sperm in the lab and immediately transferred to fallopian tube. Fertilization happens inside your body.
  • Donor egg or embryo or sperm: IVF can be done by donor eggs, if the patient is unable to conceive with their eggs. Similarly, this procedure can be done with donated sperm or donated embryo.
  • Surrogacy: In surrogacy the embryo is carried by another woman. Either the donor egg is combined with father sperm and resultant embryo is transferred to surrogate uterus or a donor embryo is transferred.

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

Indications
  • Blocked or damaged fallopian tubes
  • Decreased sperm count
  • Decreased mobility of sperm
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Ovulation disorders
  • Recurrent pregnancy failure
  • Genetic disorders
  • Unexplained infertility

Step by step procedure

Fertility medicines are prescribed to increase egg production. Usually there will be one egg during ovulation. Fertility medications induce multiple eggs. Transvaginal ultrasound is performed to examine ovary and harmone levels are checked.

 Eggs are retrieved through follicular aspiration surgery. Hallow needle is inserted through vagina with a guidance of ultrasound to retrieve eggs. It is done as an outpatient procedure. Patients might get cramps after surgery, but will be relieved within a day. Male partner (husband) is asked to masturbate and the sperms is prepared for Fertilization.

 

Sperm and eggs are mixed together in laboratory for Fertilization. This process is called insemination.

Embryo is now transferred into the uterus by a catheter. This procedure is carried out 3 to 5 days after egg retrieval. Usually more than one embryo are transferred, so twins, triplets are more is common among patients undergoing IVF procedure.

Success rate

Success rate of IVF depends on many factors like age of patient (young patients have more success rate) , cause of infertility (Diagnosing the cause of fertility is very important for the success of IVF), reproductive history (previously pregnant patient have high success rate) . The birth rate after IVF is 41 to 43% for patients below 35 age group. With increase in age the success rate declines.

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