Why Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is performed

In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a new medical procedure to treat infertility or genetic problems. IVF help the couples with infertility who wants to have their own baby. It is recommended to try other fertility treatments first before going for IVF treatment, as it is very expensive and invasive.  If you decided to go for IVF treatment, you and your partner must try less invasive treatment options before attempting IVF; including taking fertility drugs to increase production of eggs or intrauterine insemination (it is a procedure in which sperm are transferred in uterus at the time of ovulation).  If parents run the risk of passing a genetic disorder on to their offspring, IVF can be helpful in such condition. A medical lab can test the embryos for genetic defects or abnormalities. After that, doctor only implants healthy embryos without genetic defects.

IVF considered as a primary treatment for women suffering from infertility over age of 40 years. It can be adopted if you have certain heath problems. IVF can be beneficiary, if you or your partner has:

Damage or blockage of fallopian tube:  If the fallopian tube get damaged or blocked, it become  difficult for an egg to be fertilized or for an embryo to travel to the uterus for further fertilization. 

Ovulation disorders: If ovulation is absent or infrequent, fewer eggs will be available for further fertilization. 

Premature ovarian failure: Before the age of 40 years, many women suffered from premature ovarian failure which is the loss of normal ovarian function. If your are suffering from premature ovarian failure, the ovary won’t produce normal amounts of the hormone estrogen or have eggs to release regularly. 

Endometriosis: Endometriosis arises when the uterine tissue implants and grows outside of the uterus. Endometriosis often affects the normal function of the fallopian tubes, ovaries and uterus. 

Uterine fibroids: Many women in their 30s and 40s suffered from fibroids which is a benign tumor in the wall of the uterus. Fibroids can create problem with implantation of the fertilized egg. 

Impaired sperm function or production: Low-average sperm concentration, poor mobility of sperm (weak movement), or abnormalities in sperm quality, size and shape can make it difficult for sperm to fertilize an egg for further fertilization. If your partner is suffered from any of these semen abnormalities, he must need to see a specialist to determine if there are correctable problems or underlying health concerns for the further IVF procedure. 

Unexplained infertility:  No cause of infertility can also identified despite evaluation for common causes. 

Genetic disorder:  If you or your partner carries a risk of passing on a genetic disorder to your offspring, you may be recommended for having pre-implantation genetic diagnosis. It is a procedure that involves IVF. After the eggs are successfully harvested and fertilized, few tests can be performed to screen for certain genetic problems. Generally not all genetic problems can be found in these tests. The embryos that don’t show identified abnormalities of problems can be transferred to the uterus.

Click to know, Is IVF Painful?

Risks Associated with In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a complex medical treatment used to treat infertility or genetic problems and help with the conception of a child. It is a type of assisted reproduction procedure in which a woman’s eggs and a man’s sperm are combined outside of the woman’s body in a laboratory dish. Then one or more fertilized eggs (embryos) directly transferred into the woman’s uterus. Pregnancy happens if any of the embryos implant in the uterine lining. In fact, serious health issues from IVF procedures and medicines are rare. However, there are some risks associated with this all medical treatments. The most common risks are discussed below.

Multiple pregnancies: If more than one embryo is implanted in your uterus, there is an increase risk of multiple pregnancies. There is a high risk of early labor and low birth weight if a pregnancy with multiple fetuses occurred, but there is a low risk if pregnancy occurred with a single fetus.

Psychological stress: IVF involves a significant financial, physical and emotional commitment on the part of a couple, specially if in vitro fertilization (IVF) is unsuccessful psychological stress and emotional problems are common. Support from family and friends or counselors may help the couple through the ups and downs of infertility treatment.

Very expensive:  IVF Procedure is expensive and most of the insurance companies do not provide coverage for fertility treatment. The cost for a single IVF cycle can cost from at least $12,000-$18,000.

Low birth weight and premature delivery:  It is suggested that use of IVF significantly increases the risk that a baby will be low birth weight or born early as expected.

Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome: During the IVF procedure, to induce ovulation many injectable fertility drugs such as human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) are used which can cause ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Signs and symptoms of this treatment typically last a week and include pain, bloating, mild abdominal pain nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. In many pregnant women, the symptoms might last several weeks. There is a possibility to develop a more-severe form of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome that can increase the chances of shortness of breath or rapid weight gain.

Miscarriage: The rate of miscarriage is about 15 to 25 percent for women who conceive using IVF with fresh embryos is similar to that of women who conceive naturally, but this rate generally increases with maternal age. The risk of miscarriage increases with the use of frozen embryos during IVF procedure.

Egg-retrieval procedure complications: Use of an aspirating needle to collect eggs during IVF could possibly cause infection or damage to the bowel, bladder or a blood vessel or bleeding. If general anesthesia has been used, high risks will increase with the mother.

Birth defects: No matter how the child is conceived, the age of the mother is the main risk factor in the development of birth defects in the baby. More research is required to evaluate whether babies conceived using IVF might involved in increased risk of certain birth defects. Some experts suggest that the use of IVF does not increase the risk of having a baby with birth defects.