in vitro fertilisation (ivf)

Top 9 Myths and Facts to be considered to boost IVF Success

  • 4.7   (6 Votes)
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Deepika Tiwari - MBBS on 02 Jan 2019 - Written by Dr. Sonu Balhara Ahlawat - MBBS - Grammatically Approved by Dr. Kavita Jaggi Agrawal - MBBS

There are multiple myths about IVF treatment such as no control over IVF success rate, smoking affects the treatment, having sex within 24 hours of ovulation increases high chances of pregnancy. The facts which increase IVF success rate are types of infertility, age, use of donor eggs, lifestyle habits, and chosen fertility clinic.

When it comes to fertility and conception, there are several rumors that have been making rounds for years. However, it's necessary to take care and check your facts before believing anything. It is these rumors like smoking while trying to conceive has no ill-effects or suffering from STDs doesn't interfere with your ability to conceive etc. that make couples refuse to hunt for the much-required fertility treatment despite years of trying. Many couples are struggling with infertility and have many unasked questions along with a few misconceptions. Ensure that you schedule an appointment with a fertility expert and discuss your health report. Many infertile couples have become parents because of IVF treatment. If you are planning to consult a doctor then you must have a clear view of what IVF treatment is and why exactly it is required in your case. Here are 9 myths and facts about IVF that’s a must know for you.

Myth 1: You Do Not Have Control Over the Success Of an IVF Cycle

There is no truth to the fact that you absolutely have no control over an IVF cycle. The results of an IVF cycle are largely based upon a thorough evaluation of the couple’s reproductive health. There is an array of tests your doctor can do before prior to the treatment that has a role in optimizing success rates of IVF cycle. Not every fertility center or doctor completes a thorough evaluation so you must consider the below points if you want to boost IVF success rate.

  • Ensure that your uterus is ready, as your uterine cavity should be examined with ultrasound and prevent implantation. Your tubes should be clear as the fluid in your fallopian tubes reduces the chances of success. If the fluid is present, then it is necessary to remove it prior to starting IVF. Make sure that you have a sperm analysis as the quality of the sperm is compared with what is required for IVF success.
  • A study found that if you want to boost IVF, then a woman must sleep for 7 to 9 hours every night.
  • For many couples who cannot conceive, In Vitro fertilization can be a great help and make their dream come true. Moreover, ensure that the treatment is taken as soon as the causes of infertility are revealed as time is another factor that decides for success.

Myth 2: Smoking Has No ill effects While You Try To Conceive

This is just a myth so don't believe it. A woman should create a safe haven for her child to develop and grow in her womb. Ensure that you stop smoking once you plan to conceive. It is recommended that you stop smoking at least six months before conception. This is not only essential for women, but men too as smoking deteriorate sperm health.

Myth 3: Having Sex Within 24 hours of Ovulation Will Boost the Chances Of Pregnancy

The lifespan of the sperm is 72 hours and that of the egg is just 24 hours. It is advisable to have sex at the earliest as ovulation happens as it enhances the chances of conception.

Myth 4: Having Sex Every Day Can Make a Baby Without going Through IVF

This is a myth, as going with this, many childless couples could not give birth to babies there can be many problems in either the man or the woman that could be problematic for conception. A man might suffer from oligospermia or azoospermia that can weaken the couple's chance of conception. Or, a woman might suffer from PCOS, obesity or have blocked fallopian tube. It is recommended that if a couple is trying for a baby for more than a year without any positive result, then they should take help from the fertility experts.

Myth 5: Special Diets Or Herbal Medicines Can Boost IVF or Your Chances Of Getting Pregnant

There is no evidence to suggest that any specific diet or herb can boost the chances of IVF success or should be taken along with fertility drugs. It is advisable to consult your doctor before taking any herbal medicine. Our experts recommend following a healthy and balanced diet. Maintaining your weight within a certain range is also very crucial. No one would want to go into an IVF cycle morbidly underweight or overweight.

Myth 6: Suffering From STD Doesn't Hinder the Ability to Conceive

False, if you aware of suffering from an STD, then it is advisable that you postpone your plan to conceive for a while. Once you complete your treatment, consult your doctor to know if you are ready to conceive. STD can cause blockage of the reproductive organs in both men and women, leading to infertility. So, ensure that you practice safe sex.

Myth 7: Stick To Bed Rest After Embryo Transfer For A Week

This is just a myth and there is no need to put your life on hold after embryo transfer. A study found out that even a short period of bed rest isn't helpful or guarantees success. Experts believe that bed rest can actually be adverse as it prevents normal blood flow and heart rate. Bed rest will not boost IVF treatment, so consult your doctor.

Myth 8: Stress Can Affect Your Ability To Conceive and Fertility Treatment is Not Required

False, if you believe that stress can hinder your ability to conceive and exercise can help you and you don't need an IVF treatment then you are wrong. It is true that a healthy body and mind can boost the chances of getting you pregnant, but if age is not in your favor then, it is better you consult a doctor. It is recommended that you check the status of your fertility rather than focusing only on your lifestyle.

Myth 9: A Late Pregnancy is Manageable if Your Menstruation Cycle Has Been Regular

There is no doubt that you are in your fertile period till you menstruate. But, you should not forget that the quality and health of your egg have no relation to your periods. The quality of your eggs start to deteriorate after 25 years of age and when a woman conceives after 30 years of age, then they run a slightly greater risk of having chromosomal abnormalities in the fetus. So, it is advisable that the earlier you get pregnant the better. While a woman can menstruate till 40, it does not necessarily mean that they will have healthy eggs that can help them conceive.

The above-mentioned facts about fertility and conception might solve your problem. There a number of rumors that people believe and because of these myths, many couples refuse to seek help from a fertility expert even after not being able to conceive. It is essential to be cautious and check your facts twice before believing them.

Considering In vitro fertilization (IVF)? Then it’s necessary to find out the facts about IVF success factors, which will facilitate or hinder your chances of getting pregnant.

Fact 1: Age

Your age is an important IVF success factor to think about. Younger women have higher probabilities of falling pregnant after In vitro fertilization but being an older woman with fewer or inferior quality eggs impact the success rates negatively. The live birth rate for women below thirty-five is 40%. However, ladies over the age of forty-two have 40% success rate on an average.

Fact 2: Previous physiological state

Your success with IVF also depends upon the fact whether you have given birth previously with the same partner. If you were pregnant previously with the same partner that’s presently undergoing IVF treatment, there's a bigger expectation of IVF success. Factors like a history of recurrent miscarriage or a different partner might scale back the possibilities of IVF success.

Fact 3 – Types of fertility issues

While some male infertility issues do impact success of IVF, factors like uterine abnormalities, exposure to DES or fibroid tumors additionally decrease the probability of success with IVF. It’s important to know that success of IVF is dependent on the ovulation process. Ovarian dysfunction as shown by high FSH levels indicates a low ovarian reserve and can reduce the possibilities of IVF success. Factors, which lower pregnancy rates and limit success with IVF lead to intake of great amounts of ovulation stimulation medicine during the procedure. When each partner is infertile with lower probabilities for IVF success, factors like the length of time you've been infertile is vital to think about. The possibilities of IVF success decrease with the type of fertility they have been suffering from like primary or secondary.

Fact 4 – Use of donor eggs

Donor eggs are a major help, particularly if you're over 35-40 and not able to produce good quality eggs in sufficient numbers. Factors like quality of egg and age of donor are necessary. Using donor eggs from younger women may increase the possibilities of pregnancy for women over forty.

Fact 5 – Lifestyle habits

Stop smoking if you wish to boost your possibility of getting a baby. In fact, a woman is needed to stop smoking at least three months before beginning IVF treatment. Following are the factors that a smoker has to consider if they are trying to conceive:

  • Smokers need higher dosages of fertility medicine to stimulate their ovaries.
  • Smokers have lower implantation rates than nonsmokers.
  • Women who smoke need nearly twice as many IVF attempts.
  • Women who smoke are likely to experience a lot of failing fertilization cycle.

You need to think about losing weight if you're overweight or obese. Female who are overweight have redoubled risk of infertility as well as miscarriage. Overweight ladies even have less fertilization success rate with fertility treatments than women of normal weight. Thin women also are at a bigger risk of failed IVF cycle. Bottom line is that one should aim to remain within the healthy weight range.

Fact 6 – The Fertility Clinic

The center you decide on for IVF treatment will greatly affect chances of IVF success. Factors to consider once reviewing the success rate of fertility centers include:

  • Training and knowledge of the fertility clinic and staff.
  • Live birth rate per fertilization cycle started. 
  • Rate of patients pregnant with multiples (twins, triplets or more).
  • The laboratory used by the clinic and therefore the qualifications of their staff.
  • The types of patients accepted at the clinic, a lot of specifically their age and fertility drawback

Keep in mind that some clinics simply accept patients even when the chances of success are low or they may concentrate on specific treatments only and therefore may not be the best suited for you.

Know your IVF success factors as you plan to get pregnant

Remember, even with any chronic ill health issue, knowledge is power with infertility. The more you find out about specific IVF success factors, the more control you'll get over the choices you make.

Dr. Sonu Balhara Ahlawat

Written by

Infertility Specialist, Obstetrician

Dr. Sonu Balhara Ahlawat is a skilled infertility specialist and obstetrician with an MBBS in Gynecology and Obstetrics from Pandit B.D.S. in 1994. She pursued Post Graduate from Institute of Medical Sciences, Rohtak in 2000. She is a member of the Federation of Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Delhi and Indian Fertility Society and Obstetric and Gynecological Societies of India. She holds her expertise in Infertility Treatments, Intrauterine Insemination, Cervical Cerclage and Breast Cancer Screening, Contraception advice. She is currently practising at Artemis Hospital in Gurgaon. The contact details of Dr. Sonu Balhara Ahlawat are available at


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Me and my husband were trying to conceive for over 5 years and went for several cycles of IUI treatment. We did not know what to do next, that’s when Elawoman opened up our eyes. They gave us all the information that we needed to know about infertility, IVF and IUI. We know everything about infer...

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I am an infertility patient but knew nothing about the procedures and treatments. Elawoman was the one who cleared all my confusion and doubts about infertility and In-vitro Fertilization. Now, I know the cost and procedures of infertility, I'm ready to go for the treatment process. Thank You Ela...

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