Trying for a baby can be an exciting time, but if the process is taking longer than expected then it can quickly turn into a frustrating and upsetting experience for all involved. If you have been trying for a year or longer, you could be eligible for free IVF treatment.
Unfortunately, there is relatively limited NHS funding available for IVF in the UK, and many people with fertility problems simply cannot afford the expense of opting for private treatment. However, there is now a revolutionary fresh way of providing free IVF treatment for infertile couples who are willing to take donor eggs. This procedure is commonly referred to as Egg Sharing.
Pregnancy is a beautiful phase but what if a woman does not get pregnant? It is the nastiest thing that can occur in a woman's life. Therefore, to cure fertility issues in ladies, In vitro fertilisation (IVF) has appeared as one of the finest treatments.
So, if you are about to start a course of IVF, this article explores some of the essential things you need to know about the treatments.
What is IVF?
When a woman conceives naturally, sperm from the man and eggs from the woman are met in the woman's fallopian tubes. These tubes join the ovaries of the uterus (Womb). One sperm infiltrates the egg and fertilizes it.
In IVF, the entire process happens outside the woman's body. As part of the procedure, the woman's egg are surgically eliminated and fertilized in the laboratory using sample sperm that has been provided for the procedure.
The fertilized egg, commonly known as embryo is then inserted into the woman's womb using surgical process. Typically, one period of IVF requires between four and seven weeks and includes six measures to complete the process:
Firstly your natural monthly cycle will be suppressed by giving each day injections or nasal sprays for about two weeks. Once your natural period is suppressed, you take a fertility hormone called FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) or gonadotrophins that may increase the number of eggs your ovaries create, which means- the more the eggs will be collected, greater the choice of embryos used in your treatment.
The doctors will watch your drug treatment through vaginal ultrasound scans to examine your ovaries. In some cases, blood tests are also being conducted on the patient to check on the process.
It may take 34-38 hours for your eggs to be collected, and then you will have final hormone injection that helps your eggs to mature. The mature eggs are then collected and fertilized.
The fertilized eggs (embryos) continue to grow in the laboratory for 1-5 days before being transferred into the womb. The one or two finest embryos will be chosen for transfer.
Patients need to discuss the number of embryos to be transferred before the treatment. As a rule, women's under the age of 37 in their first IVF period should have only single embryo transfer followed by single embryo move in the second cycle. Doctors should only consider using two embryos if quality embryos are available. In the third IVF cycle, no more than two embryos should be transferred.
IVF treatment- The Risks and Results
According to the latest study, only 20-25% of IVF treatments have so far resulted into pregnancy. Also it is said; the success rate younger women in more when compared with women's over 40 years of age.
With IVF, there is an increased chance of multiple pregnancies that may affect the health of both mother and child.
Before undertaking the treatment, ensure that you choose the well-known IVF specialist in the region. Singapore, being one of the most preferred locations for medical care services has highly qualified and experienced medical specialists who are recognized leaders in their fields.
There are a variety of reasons why some women are not able to produce their own eggs. This could be due to early menopause or simply a biological problem that cannot be resolved. Cancer patients that have received chemotherapy or radiotherapy may find that there is a risk that it offers rendered them infertile.
Free IVF treatment via egg sharing is a totally anonymous experience - the donor and recipient will never meet. Patients receiving IVF treatment may be asked to produce 10-12 eggs, but according to UK legislation only one or two of these eggs are permitted to become donated. Whilst the remaining eggs can be frozen, the patient has the option to share these eggs with others. Egg sharers then go through the normal IVF procedure with the eggs becoming shared between the egg donor and recipient.
Here are some things you should know about IVF treatment before you take the plunge:
1. Success Rate of IVF
There are several factors which determine the success rate of IVF success, which may vary from couple to couple. These aspects include age, way of life and the cause of infertility of a particular couple. As a general rule, those under 30 yrs have 50% chances of success, while for people over 40, the chances may fall dramatically to 20%. However, things are looking up as there has been great improvement in technology.
2. Fertility Drop in Women
Because the age is reached by way of a woman of 35 yrs, her fertility celebrities declining at a rapid rate, both in terms of number of eggs as well as their quality. A blood test called AMH can be conducted to find out about the number of eggs produced in a woman, though it does not disclose much about their quality.
3. Reduced Fertility in Men
Just like women, men too experience a drop in fertility rate as they age. Though males continue producing sperm, the quality of sperm deteriorates as they step into the forties and it can result in problems related to infertility. Also, sperms from older males lack in motility, amount and are prone to DNA damage, which can lead to birth defects in the offspring.
4. It is better to take quick action
Couples should not wait too long to seek help in case they suspect infertility. Those who are under 35 should visit a professional if they fail to conceive within 12 weeks of trying, while those over 35 should do so only after 6 months.
5. IVF costs high on emotional and financial aspects
The process of IVF isn't just taxing on pocket but also takes its toll on the physical and emotional health. It can cause symptoms such as fatigue, mood swings and headaches, not to point out the stress she has to bear while waiting for the outcome of the process.
6. It is better to freeze your eggs at a younger age
Women should have their eggs frozen before crossing the age of 35 years and use them for their first and subsequent pregnancies as these eggs give them better chances of success of IVF.
7. Timing of IVF Treatment
Proper timing of the treatment in accordance with the woman's cycle plays a key role in the success of the IVF process. Also, a test for pregnancy should be conducted only two weeks after the embryo's move to the womb.
8. Risks involved in IVF Treatment
Though IVF is regarded as a safe process, about 1% of the patients are susceptible to being affected by a condition called Ovulation Hyperstimulation Syndrome. It means that a woman produced too many eggs after the hormone treatment. However, use of low drug doses has minimized the risk.
9. Success is not guaranteed
Though IVF has revolutionized the fertility treatments, it still gives no guarantees as many other unexpected problems may come in the way of its success. Such couples who have encountered failure in repeated tries may finally have to settle without success. Counseling may help them cope with reality.
10. It is possible to complete the entire family with a single cycle
Innovation in medical technology has made it possible for couples to complete the entire family with a single cycle. They can do so by having the first child in a period and have the embryos frozen for subsequent pregnancies, to be used at later stages.
Dr Patrick Quinn is a a scientific advisor for Vitromed Germany and has succesfully work with the IVF treatment & developed one of the Human Tubal Fluid medium. Patrick Quinn is an an expert in IVF treatment.
Overall, it is now possible to know whether IVF is meant for a couple or not, as they may come to know in a few attempts only whether they are likely to ever see a positive outcome.