What can you expect when you go for an IVF treatment?

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IVF is a preferred, helpful and proven treatment for those couples who cannot conceive naturally. When you go for an IVF treatment, you will go through a lot of stages involving, blood examinations, injections and visits to an IVF clinic. 

There are a series of procedures involved including:

  • Ovulation induction
  • Egg retrieval
  • Sperm collection / retrieval
  • Fertilization and embryo transfer

Your doctor will stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs at once. It can take about 10-12 days for the eggs to be ready for collection. Collection of Eggs is a short process which lasts for 20 minutes and under general anaesthesia.

You can also go back home the same day. The male partner will give a fresh semen sample from which good sperms are collected.

Your IVF specialist will mix eggs and sperms in a lab to produce embryos, which are implanted into the mother’s womb, through a precise procedure. In this procedure, your doctor will insert a thin tube called a catheter into the vagina, through the cervix, and into the mother’s uterus and release the embryo for implantation. 

Your doctor may transfer one or two embryos and freeze the rest for later use in the following cycles. Freezing embryos and storing them happens by vitrification in liquid nitrogen at minus 196 deg Celcius.

If your first IVF cycle is successful, you are ready to become parents. However, if it fails, you can decide to try again with a few more additional cycles. In such cases, as guided by your IVF doctor, it is suggested to wait for 1 or 2 months between the two cycles.

There are several factors which depend on the success of an IVF treatment such as the age of partners, quality of the egg, sperm and the embryo and number of embryos transferred into the womb.

Do’s and Dont’s during an IVF Treatment. 

IVF can be a tiring and stressing process that needs involvement at an emotional, physical and spiritual level. Many times the uncertainty of what will happen next is worrisome; every woman might not react the same way or have success with an IVF treatment. 

However, there is something you can do to ensure a better outcome. During an IVF treatment, there are some things that you have to avoid and some things you should do:

Do’s

  • Reduce your stress and have a positive outlook on life and this treatment. Some people find meditation helpful. Keep your day as normal as possible.
  • Educate yourself about IVF treatment – the procedure, benefits, risks, success rates, etc. The more you know, the lesser your stress levels.
  • Eat a healthy diet, especially during this treatment. The healthier you begin, the better is the outcome with IVF.
  • Your healthy diet must contain lots of proteins, fruits, and leafy greens, along with good hydration, will assure the success of the treatment.
  • Optimize your weight to normal for your height. Start to manage your weight before you begin your treatment. A BMI of over 30 or less than 19 contributes to poor outcomes even if all other parameters appear normal.
  • Get adequate sleep. You might feel fatigued and exhausted during these days because of the mental and emotional pressure, so it is best to sleep adequately.
  • Exercise regularly and in moderation, do not overdo it, but enough to keep yourself healthy and in good shape.
  • Make sure you take vitamins and micronutrient supplements regularly but get it checked by your doctor before you start taking them.

Don’ts

  • Avoid listening to negative people. All couples are not the same everyone’s case is different. The outcome of other couples IVF treatment has no bearing on you.
  • Do not neglect your health and wellbeing.
  • Stop smoking, drinking alcohol, or using illegal drugs. These will affect your success rates and chances for a pregnancy.
  • Do not overexert yourself physically and emotionally.
  • Do not stop after one failed IVF cycle. Some couples require multiple IVF cycles before achieving pregnancy.
  • Do not lose hope. There is always another plan that your doctor can advise you about.

Your IVF specialist will assist you as much as possible and make in vitro fertilization the right choice for you and your family. Also, join a support group or get a counsellor to assist you and your partner through this treatment.

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