IVF Complete Procedure: A Step-By-Step Guide
In the recent past, Assisted Reproductive Techniques (ART) has been bringing hope to more and more couples who are unable to conceive naturally. If infertility is affecting your dreams of having a family and you are considering alternative ways, In-Vitro Fertilization or IVF can be one way to go about it.
This article relates to the possibilities that IVF holds and how you can approach this technique.
What Is IVF-ICSI?
ICSI-IVF is the latest ART procedure where a single good quality sperm is picked up with a fine glass needle and is injected directly into each egg under micro-manipulator. Very few sperms are required and the ability of the sperm to penetrate the egg is no longer important as this has been assisted by the ICSI technique. The samples are brought together in a lab that induces ideal environment mimicking the natural conditions which facilitate artificial fertilization. Fertilized eggs are kept under observation for a couple of days and then the embryo(s) are transferred inside the womb. Once the embryo attaches to the uterine wall, the rest of the pregnancy proceeds like any other natural pregnancy.
How Is An IVF-ICSI Performed?
Believe it or not, consultation is the MOST important factor when it comes to IVF. Why? Well, there’s the obvious – the doctor will assess your health conditions. She/he will discuss all the alternatives and walk you through the pros and cons. Based on various test results of both the partners, if IVF is your best solution, She/he will brief you about the scope of IVF and its limitations. Post consultation, you can take your time in deciding what you want to do. A decision as important as making a family must be a well-informed and a thoroughly thought out decision.
But what makes a consultation the most important thing, is building trust. You have to trust your doctor. Your chances of getting pregnant mostly depend on your health conditions but research shows that the chances are significantly higher where there is a high level of trust between the patient and the doctor. And in this scenario, both you and your partner (and the surrogate mother, if applicable) should be on board.
At Premier Hospital, we maintain a high degree of privacy of our clients and we make sure that you are comfortable with any kind of treatment you are taking. We also appreciate if you want to consult another doctor at our clinic for getting a second opinion. Trust is extremely important here.
Stimulation: Step I
This is the first step in the process. After undergoing through Investigations, the ovaries of the female partner are stimulated by injection and medication for 10-12 days. This continues until the eggs are mature. The stimulation process is controlled through an ultrasound scan and E2 level. Then HCG administered. During this process, couples will have to visit the hospital on a daily basis.
Oocyte (egg) retrieval step II
After administering HCG you will be given time and date for egg retrieval. Based on the doctor’s assessment, a date is fixed for egg collection and the female partner’s eggs are removed under vaginal ultrasound guided probe and the follicles are aspirated. There are no cuts made on the abdomen. When it’s time, the female partner is given a short general anaesthesia to eliminate any possible discomfort. Follicular fluid (eggs and other surrounding elements) is retrieved using suction. The sample is sent to an embryologist who will give the report on the number of healthy eggs available. A count of 6 or higher is considered good. The eggs are stored in an incubator.
The woman can generally go home after resting for one hour or so.
The man can provide a sperm sample after 3-5 days of abstinence. While sperm sample can be collected at home, we advise that a sample is provided at a reserved chamber of our clinic. This is because it is highly important that the semen is collected in a sterile container and it is kept warm and is handed to an expert within 1 hour of retrieval.
The semen sample is tested for sperm count and quality. In case there is no measurable healthy sperm in the given sample, a microneedle can be used to extract semen from the male partner’s body non-surgically.
The collected semen is processed to retrieve healthy sperms.
The retrieved sperm and the eggs are placed together in a petri dish in a special chamber for fertilisation. If there is any complication or to increase the chance of pregnancy, a chosen sperm can be injected directly into an egg. This process is called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
The fertilised eggs are watched for a few days to a week to check for their survival and development.
Embryo transfer Step III
Once the eggs are collected, the embryologist starts working on healthy oocytes and each oocyte is injected with selected sperm of the partner. The dishes are left in the incubator overnight to allow fertilization to take place. Usually, about 60%-70% of the eggs collected will be fertilized. After 2-3 days, the embryos will usually consist of four to eight cells, and at this stage are ready for transfer to the uterus. Under ultrasound guidance, three good quality embryos are carefully selected and carefully transferred through the vagina and cervix to the uterus, where implantation begins.
Beta HCG: Step IV
After 15 days of the transfer, the female partner is asked to undergo a beta HCG test to confirm the Pregnancy. If the pregnancy is confirmed then they are called after 15 days for a fetal heart scan.
If any of these embryos attach to your uterine lining, then You Are PREGNANT! You can take a pregnancy test after 2 weeks to know the results.
The time gap between starting the treatment and getting pregnant can feel stressful and restless. But try to keep calm. Abide by your doctor’s instruction, keep a positive mind. IVF is one of the most trusted ART for couples who suffer from infertility.
For any further query, for any personalized questions, you can call us any time of the day or book an appointment with our infertility experts. We hope to help you make the family that you deserve!
About The Hospital:
Since the inception of Premier Hospital in 1991 till today, we have grown to unprecedented levels, due to our excellence in medical sciences and healthcare. Premier Hospital is the creation of Dr Mahesh Marda and when it was first established, was only a small, 30-bed hospital facility. Back then, we provided only secondary care to patients, but that certainly has changed in the present landscape.
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