Phase 1: Egg production stimulated by hormone therapy
Normally, a woman’s egg grows, matures and hatches once a month. If only one egg is retrieved during IVF, it may not fertilize or a healthy embryo may not develop after fertilization. For this reason, in IVF, ovarian stimulants are used to try to obtain a large number of eggs. The treatment is started on the 2nd day of menstruation according to the results of vaginal ultrasonography and blood hormone tests.
Stage 2: Eggs retrieved from the ovary
The expectant mother is given a mild sedative or anesthetic to prevent pain or other discomfort during the egg retrieval. The doctor aspirates eggs from the woman’s ovaries using an ultrasound vaginal probe with a thin hollow needle attached. This procedure takes about 12-30 minutes.
Stage 3: Sperm retrieval
On the same day as the egg retrieval, a sperm sample is requested from the father-to-be.
Stage 4: Egg and sperm are combined to achieve fertilization
In conventional in vitro fertilization (IVF), sperm and eggs are mixed in a petri dish and then brought together in a culture medium in the laboratory to wait for fertilization. During this period, your doctor checks for signs of fertilization and monitors the growth of the embryos.
Stage 5: Fertilized eggs are implanted in the mother’s uterus
After fertilization, the embryo development is monitored and the transfer is performed on the appropriate day.
Note: If you experience moderate or severe pain after embryo transfer, you should consult your doctor.
Step 6: Pregnancy test is performed
After an average of two weeks after the embryo transfer, a pregnancy test is performed to determine whether a pregnancy has occurred.
What factors determine the success of IVF treatment?
Age of the expectant mother: The younger the expectant mother, the more likely she is to become pregnant with IVF and to give birth to a healthy baby using her own eggs.
Embryo status: Not all embryos survive the development process. An early decline in embryo quality in terms of these parameters can lead to stalled or poor development in the later stages.
Previous childbirth: Women who have given birth before are more likely to get pregnant using IVF than expectant mothers who have never given birth.
Infertility: Having a normal egg supply increases your chances of getting pregnant using IVF. Women with severe endometriosis are less likely to get pregnant using IVF than women with unexplained infertility
Lifestyle: Expectant mothers who smoke may get fewer eggs and miscarry more often during in vitro fertilization (IVF). Smoking can reduce a woman’s chances of getting pregnant using IVF by 50%. Obesity can also reduce the chances of getting pregnant and having a baby. In addition to all these, alcohol use, excessive consumption and the use of certain medications can also have a negative effect on IVF treatment.
In which cases is IVF treatment preferable?
Some of the reasons behind the need for IVF treatment are as follows:
Fallopian tube damage or blockage: Damage or blockage of the fallopian tube makes it difficult for an egg to fertilize or an embryo to travel to the uterus.
Ovulation disorders: Low ovarian reserve Anovulation accounts for 5-25% of causes of infertility. The presence of ovulation in a woman can be detected by monitoring ovulation with ultrasonography (USG) or by checking progesterone hormone levels in serum (on days 19, 21 and 23 of menstruation). If the egg does not grow on USG or if repeated progesterone measurements are below 3 mg/ml, ovulation is not present.
Endometriosis Endometriosis occurs when uterine tissue grows outside the uterus – usually affecting the function of the ovaries, uterus and fallopian tubes.
Uterine fibroids: Fibroids are benign tumors in the uterine wall and are common in women in their 30s and 40s. Fibroids can interfere with the implantation of a fertilized egg.
Previous tubal sterilization or removal: If you have had tubal ligation (a type of sterilization in which the fallopian tubes are cut or blocked to permanently prevent pregnancy) and want to conceive, IVF tubal ligation may be an alternative to reversing this condition.
Impaired sperm production or function: Below-average sperm concentration, poor movement of sperm (poor motility), inability to penetrate cervical mucus, failure to survive, or abnormalities in sperm size and shape.
Unexplained infertility: Unexplained infertility means that no cause of infertility has been found, despite evaluation for common causes.