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06 February 2017

IVF Procedure in Six Steps

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Written by Dr. Sailaja Vuppu
When planning for a baby through fertility treatment, IVF or ivf treatment and ivf procedureis one of the most effective test tube baby available these days

When planning for a baby through fertility treatment, IVF or ivf treatment and ivf procedureis one of the most effective test tube baby available these days

When planning for a baby through fertility treatment, IVF treatment or IVF procedure and test tube baby or In Vitro Fertilization is one of the most effective ones available these days. However, not many of us know what exactly it is and how it works. Here is a step-b-step detailed description of the IVF treatment or IVF procedure and test tube baby.

How is IVF Performed

1. OVARY STIMULATION: 8 to 14 days prior to the next menstrual cycle, the woman is given medicines to suppress her natural cycle. (To know your next predicted period dates, refer Ela App). The natural cycle is suppressed through daily injections, tabletx or a nasal spray. After suppressing the natural cycle, fertility drugs are given to the woman for about 2 weeks, in order to stimulate the ovaries. These drugs help in developing multiple matured eggs instead of just one. Along with these, the woman has to take synthetic hormones to keep her body from releasing matured eggs too early.

2. PROGRESS CHECK: Every woman responds to these fertility drugs differently and the doctor keeps an eye on possible side-effects. The doctor will monitor the progress of matured eggs through vaginal ultrasound scans and blood tests. Within 36 hours of collecting the eggs, a hormone injection is given to help the eggs grow in a positive environment. 

3. COLLECTION OF EGGS: By giving an anesthesia to the woman, an ultrasound probe is inserted to examine the follicular development in each ovary. A thin needle is inserted to remove the eggs from the ovaries. One might experience some discomfort in terms of cramps or spotting but these symptoms disappear in a day or two. 

4. FERTILIZATION: An embryologist (a scientist who specializes in eggs, sperm, and embryos) examines the eggs before combining them with the sperm.The eggs are mixed with the sperm and cultured in the laboratory for about 16-20 hours. In the next step, the eggs are checked for fertilization. The fertilized eggs (now called as embryos) will be placed in an incubator for up to six days and the development of the embryos is closely monitored. The embryos are then examined and the healthiest embryo is selected for transferring. The remaining healthy embryos are stored and freezed for future IVF treatment or IVF procedure and test tube baby if needed. 

5. EMBRYO TRANSFER: Depending on the couple’s age and severity of the fertility problem, doctor places between one to five embryos in the uterus by inserting a thin tube (a catheter) through the cervix. The number of embryos transferred is restricted because of the risks associated with multiple births. Due to this, the doctor might recommend single embryo transfer (SET) if he/she feels it is the best option for you. This is usually a pain-free procedure and no sedation is necessary, but one may experience a little discomfort as you need a full bladder in case of ultrasound.

6. SUCCESSFUL IMPLANTATION: If the treatment works perfectly, then the next step involves implanting an embryo in the uterine wall. One can take the pregnancy test about two weeks after the insertion of embryo. 

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