IVF Guide - A Quick Guide to IVF
What is IVF?
IVF is a treatment for infertility and is performed by fertility specialists at fertility clinics.
How does IVF treatment work?
In IVF treatment (called an IVF "cycle") eggs are removed from the woman and fertilized with sperm in the laboratory to produce embryos. The embryos are grown in the laboratory for a few days then placed back in the woman's uterus to achieve pregnancy. The pregnancy is monitored as usual until the birth of the baby.
Who does IVF?
IVF is performed by fertility specialists (Reproductive Endocrinologists). A Reproductive Endocrinologists is a doctor specially trained in infertility and is not the same as a Urologist or Ob/Gyn.
How successful is IVF treatment?
Some fertility clinics measure the success rate for IVF as the probability of getting pregnant. They even distinguish between different stages of pregnancy. But pregnancy is not the same as a live birth, so a better measure of IVF success is the probability of getting a baby i.e. a live birth. This success rate for a single IVF cycle is about 30%, but this number can vary widely depending on such factors as the women's age and the IVF clinic used.
How much does IVF cost?
IVF is not cheap. The cost of IVF varies widely from city to city, and many people travel to save on IVF. Check the listings on the right for worldwide IVF prices.
What are the types of IVF?
Most IVF clinics offer a full range of fertility treatments, including several IVF treatments. Types of IVF treatment include IVF with ICSI, IVF with sperm donor, IVF with egg donor, IVF with PGD, and Natural IVF.
Here's what they mean..
ICSI allows fertilization of the eggs with an extremely small sample of sperm and is used in cases where the male produces almost no sperm.
Sperm donors can be used when the sperm from the woman's partner is not viable, or if the woman does not have a partner.
Egg Donors can be used when the woman's own eggs are not viable. This is often due to age, so older women are much more likely to need an egg donor. Most IVF cycles performed on women over 40 use donor eggs.
PGD is a test that allows doctors to screen the embryos for genetic birth defects before placing them in the uterus and therefore avoid producing a baby with these defects. This can be critically important for some patients and they may do IVF even when infertility is not an issue so they can use the PGD test.
Natural IVF is an IVF cycle that uses minimal medications. Natural IVF is simpler than regular IVF and usually costs less. It's another way of save on IVF costs.
Most IVF clinics charge extra for ICSI, PGD and Egg Donors.
How can I learn more about IVF Treatment?
Many IVF clinics offer free IVF seminars that give you an opportunity to get your questions answered by fertility specialists. We publish free IVF seminars from fertility clinics worldwide.
What other ways can I save on IVF costs?
IVF clinical trials can provide low cost or free IVF.
Is IVF the only type of fertility treatment?
No. Most fertility clinics offer a wide range of fertility treatments. But IVF is the most sophisticated fertility treatment. It's often used when other treatments fail, and IVF is required if ICSI, PGD or Egg Donor treatment is needed.
Content written and posted by Ken Abbott firstname.lastname@example.org