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Seven common questions about IVF answered



Couples who are considering in-vitro fertilization (IVF) often have a set of questions regarding the treatment. Despite this procedure being proven to treat infertility effectively, it still remains a mystery as to how it benefits people. There are a few common questions often heard from the patients while opting for IVF.

Am I a candidate for IVF?

IVF is generally considered for women who have a blocked or a damaged fallopian tube. It may also be suggested if you have certain health conditions such as endometriosis (a condition where uterine tissue implants grows outside of the uterus), or Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOS).

This procedure is also suggested if your partner has a decreased sperm count, impaired sperm quality or concentration. Depending on your history, your fertility specialist may suggest a few diagnostic tests to identify the exact cause of infertility and suggest you the best possible treatment module.

How successful is IVF?

Age is a major contributor to the success of an IVF treatment and it decreases as you grow older, due to the decreasing egg count and quality. Other factors may as well affect the success of your IVF cycle such as your weight, quality of your egg and your partner’s sperm, reproductive history and your infertility diagnosis.

Every case is different, hence it’s important that you spend time with your fertility specialist to understand the causes and treatment options available for you.

Are there any side effects and risks associated with IVF?

Like it is with most of the medical procedures, there are potential risks. IVF may lead to multiple pregnancies, and can also increase the chance of a premature delivery or birth to a low weight baby.

You may experience few of the following symptoms during and after your IVF cycle as a result of drugs and injections given:

  • Shortness of breath and faintness

  • Pain in the stomach and bloating

  • Vomiting

  • Nausea

  • Decrease in urine frequency

  • Weight gain


Is egg retrieval a painful procedure?

While retrieving your eggs, anesthesia is given due to which you may not feel the pain. It is a minor procedure that involves using an ultrasound probe with a long needle that is passed through the vagina into each ovary. The needle is used to rupture the egg follicle and the egg is sucked out. As anesthesia wears off, you might feel a slight discomfort or cramps. Sometimes, medications are given if the pain becomes unbearable.

What are the restrictions while undergoing IVF treatment?

Depending on your medical history and diagnosis, your fertility specialist may suggest a few guidelines you need to adhere to prior to, during and after your treatment. Smoking and drinking should be strictly avoided three months prior to the treatment and should be continued during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

How many times can I try IVF?

There is no fixed limit to the number of IVF cycles you can opt for. However, after regular failures, your fertility specialist may suggest some other treatment option.

How long does IVF take?

A regular IVF treatment takes anywhere from four to eight weeks from the initial consultation to the transfer. Your fertility specialist might call you further or more frequently depending on the severity of your case and how your body responds at each cycle.

As every woman is different, how she responds to the treatment will be different. Hence, clarify all doubts with your fertility specialist while you consult them.

Disclaimer: Indian Health Bureau does not claim any responsibility for the information contained in this article. The information may not hold good for everyone. The post is for general awareness only and should not be construed as a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Please consult your doctor to know what is good for you.

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