As infertility has become a widespread problem, more and more people are relying on the medical technique called In Vitro Fertilization or IVF. Couples tend to plan pregnancy at a late age, which is probably the biggest reason of infertility, along with high incidence of sexually transmitted diseases. When a couple decides to go for an IVF treatment, they should be poised for hard times ahead. Knowing a few things about IVF before beginning with the process can help them be prepared for the outcomes.
Here are some things you should know about IVF treatment before you take the plunge:
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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 factors include age, lifestyle and the cause of infertility of a particular couple. As a general rule, those under 30 years 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
As a woman reaches the age of 35 years, her fertility stars 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 men continue producing sperms, the quality of sperms deteriorates as they step into forties and it can result in problems related to infertility. Also, sperms from older men lack in motility, quantity 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 see a specialist if they fail to conceive within 12 months of trying, while those over 35 should do so only after 6 months.
5. IVF costs high on financial and emotional factors
The process of IVF is not only 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 mention 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 transfer 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 attempts 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 science 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 cycle and have the embryos frozen for subsequent pregnancies, to be used at later stages.
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.