In vitro fertilization or IVF, is the most common and effective type of assisted reproductive technology (ART) to help women become pregnant. In-vitro-Fertilization(IVF) is most commonly used infertility treatment. IVF involves combining eggs and sperm outside the body in a laboratory.
First, the medication is given that makes several of the eggs mature and ready for fertilization. During the process, a fertility doctor takes the eggs from the ovaries and fertilizes them with sperm in a specialized lab. After fertilization is done, the eggs develop into embryos. After few days, the doctor re-implants the embryos back into the uterus. Pregnancy happens if any of the embryos implants in the lining of the uterus.
IVR has many steps involved. It takes several months to complete the whole process.
There are five basic steps in IVF and embryo transfer process:
The women receive a drug, usually in the form of an injection to suppress their natural menstrual cycle.
Fertility drugs containing the fertility hormone follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) are given to women. These fertility medicines stimulate the ovaries to produce one or more eggs. Having several eggs available for IVF will increase the chances that you will get pregnant. Vaginal ultrasound scans and monitor the process of ovaries.
Egg retrieval is done at the doctor’s office 34 to 36 hours after the final injection. The eggs are removed from the follicles through a needle connected to a suction device. This process is repeated with each ovary.
Donated or frozen eggs may also be used.
The eggs that have been collected are mixed with the male sperm together and stored in a laboratory dish to encourage fertilization. Then the eggs are monitored to confirm that fertilization and cell division are taking place.
Sometimes the sperm is directly injected into the egg.Frozen sperm, which is retrieved through testicular biopsy, is used. This is believed to be effective as fresh sperm in achieving a successful pregnancy.
Embryo transfer is done at your doctor's office or a clinic and usually takes place two to six days after egg retrieval.
The transfer of the embryo is done using a thin tube, or catheter. It enters the womb through the vagina. If successful, an embryo will implant in the lining of your uterus about six to 10 days after egg retrieval.
Like all other medications and medical procedures, IVF has some possible side effects.