IVF: Living The Dream Of Parenting
IVF is a fertility program in which special fertility doctors combine an egg and a sperm outside the body then implant the embryo into the mother’s uterus. Here are ten fun facts about IVF.
1. Taking IVF literally
The literal meaning of in vitro fertilization is fertilization in glass. This is where the more common term test tube baby comes from. IVF allows doctors to fertilize an egg and then implant the embryo in a woman’s uterus increase the chance of a successful birth.
2. IVF candidates are not isolated
People who think that IVF is uncommon are mistaken. In the US alone, infertility affects 10% of women. Infertility is typically diagnosed when a couple has been trying to conceive unsuccessfully for 6-12 months.
3. Pins and needles
Studies show that acupuncture can increase the success of IVF. This form of alternative therapy may increase embryo implantation rates and the success of a live birth when used before, during and after an IVF cycle. There is a special type of acupuncture that is used for fertility treatment.
4. Younger egg donors help
Many women, particularly those who are in their 40s, can increase the chance of successful implantation by using an egg donor who is a younger woman. This also increases the chances of a live birth. Egg donation is highly regulated to ensure safety.
5. Not all harvested eggs are equal
When a woman’s eggs are harvested, the eggs will be screened to make sure that only the healthiest are used for fertilization. This maximizes the possibility of fertilization. Although the doctor may harvest 20 eggs, only a small percentage will be viable.
6. Multiple embryos and multiple births
Many women prefer to proceed with a single embryo transfer. This is because a multiple embryo transfers is more likely to result in a twin birth. Many parents prefer to use one embryo and freeze the other embryos to expand the family in the future.
7. More sleep equals better IVF
Women who have a healthy sleep cycle are more likely to have a positive IVF cycle than those who don’t. Lack of sleep can negatively affect fertility. Women who get less than 5 hours sleep per night or more than 10 hours sleep per night have lover IVF success rates.
8. IVF doesn’t mean multiples
Though many people think that IVF results in high multiple births, such as quadruplets, but this is not the case. High numbers of multiple births occur typically as a result of the fertility treatment known as intrauterine insemination (IUI).
9. More masturbation is good for men
Men who ejaculate more often tend to have healthier sperm. Masturbating frequently in the days before IVF results in sperm with better morphology and motility. Frequent masturbation often increases the chance of fertilization.
10. IVF can cause ectopic pregnancies
Even embryo implantation can sometimes result in an ectopic pregnancy. An ectopic pregnancy is when the fertilized egg implants outside of the womb. Typically, this occurs in the fallopian tubes.
IVF offers solutions
While IVF may not be right for everyone, this fertility treatment does offer options to people who otherwise would not be able to have a family. Understanding the treatment options available is the best step towards combating infertility.