Is In-Vitro Fertilization Right for You?
Assisted reproductive technologies have made a great difference for couples who are trying to conceive a pregnancy. Fertility treatment is a complex process, but many different treatments are currently available at our Vermont fertility clinic. Among these is IVF (In vitro fertilization) . Here are the basics about IVF from Northeastern Reproductive Medicine in Colchester, Vermont.
All About In Vitro Fertilization
The term “in vitro” is literally translated as “in glass.” Essentially, it involves combining eggs and sperm outside the body. This was one of the earliest types of fertility techniques and led to the term test-tube baby (a glass culture plate is actually used rather than a test tube). The treatment has several steps:
- The woman receives fertility medications to stimulate the production of multiple eggs rather than the single egg that is usually released.
- Eggs are removed from the woman’s body using a special hollow needle and placed in a culture plate.
- Sperm collected from the man through masturbation or by aspiration with a needle is combined with the eggs.
- The eggs are allowed to develop for three to five days.
- The embryos are transferred into the uterus. The embryos then implant into the uterus and the pregnancy or pregnancies proceed.
There are some variations in this process. Sometimes a single sperm is injected into a single egg to ensure conception.
In-Vitro Fertilization – A Solution
IVF can solve a number of fertility problems for both men and women. For example, low sperm count or motility can be overcome with IVF by concentrating the sperm to increase the chance of conception. As long as the ovaries are still functioning, IVF can be used in cases of blocked Fallopian tubes or after a woman has had her tubes tied or removed. Premature ovarian aging, unexplained infertility, and ovulation disorders can often be overcome with IVF. If one or both members of a couple have or may carry a genetic disorder, IVF can allow the embryo to be screened for the disorder prior to implantation.
Will I Get Pregnant?
The actual pregnancy rates from IVF can range depending on the age of the patient and their diagnosis, from 15-70% percent. Each couple has a unique response to the treatment, so reported pregnancy rates may or may not be applicable to a particular situation. For example, age makes a big difference; older women are more likely to have trouble conceiving or may not produce viable eggs. The overall health of the couple can also be a factor. All of these factors can affect conception. Nor does conception guarantee a full-term pregnancy, especially in the case of previous miscarriage(s). However, high quality medical care can make a big difference.
If you’re struggling to conceive and looking for a fertility clinic, please contact us. Northeastern Reproductive Medicine is one of the leading fertility clinics in Vermont. We’ll be happy to answer any questions or schedule an appointment.