What is In vitro fertilization?
In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process of fertilization where an egg is combined with sperm outside the body. This involves monitoring and stimulating a woman's ovulatory process, removing an ovum or ova (eggs) from the woman's ovaries and then letting sperm fertilize them in a liquid in a laboratory. The fertilized egg (zygote) undergoes embryo culture for 2–6 days.It is then transferred to the same or another woman's uterus, with the intention of establishing a successful pregnancy.
What is the success rate of it?
The success rate depends on factors such as, maternal age, cause of infertility, embryo status, reproductive history and lifestyle factors.
- Maternal age: Younger candidates of IVF are more likely to get pregnant. Women older than 41 are more likely to get pregnant with a donor egg.
- Reproductive history: Women who have been previously pregnant are in many cases more successful with IVF treatments than those who have never been pregnant.
How is it a Blessing?
- Chemotherapy: IVF allows women who are being treated for cancer with chemotherapy to be able to have children. Chemotherapy can destroy or damage the eggs within the ovary. Prior to undergoing chemotherapy treatment, some women may elect to have eggs harvested, frozen, and saved for possible subsequent attempts to have a child after the cancer treatment is completed.
- Absent Uterus: IVF treatment can allow a woman to have a child if she does not have a uterus. The eggs must be harvested from the patient’s ovaries and are then placed inside another woman’s uterus.
- Low Sperm Count: When sperms are defective or counts are extremely low, IVF can be used to become pregnant. IVF can work for these conditions because sperm is placed directly next to the egg, and, in some cases, sperm is injected into the egg (ICSI) to allow the pregnancy to occur.
- Absent Ovaries: IVF can be used for a woman without ovaries. The eggs must be donated from another woman.
- Older Age: IVF can be used for women over the age of 42 to become pregnant. To obtain this reproductive advantage, donated eggs (eggs from another woman younger than 30) must be used
- Unexplained Infertility: Some couples do not have a diagnosed reason for their infertility. This is called unexplained infertility. IVF allows egg and sperm to join together outside of the woman’s body.
- Severe Tubal Disease: Some women have extensively damaged fallopian tubes from pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or from severe intra-abdominal infections. IVF is designed to bypass the tubes by allowing conception to occur outside the body.The fertilized eggs are then introduced into the uterus in the hope of pregnancy.
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