IVF techniques have brought a smile to thousands of parents who have suffered from infertility and the inability to have children by natural means since the first successful operation in 1978 for a British woman. This new technology gives the families a long-awaited baby decorating their lives.
What is IVF?
One of the goals of a man in marriage is to have a child who fills his life, but some men may not be able to have children for many reasons like the inability of the man to produce enough sperm capable of fertilizing a woman’s egg, or ejaculatory duct obstruction, in addition to the inability to Women produce good eggs suitable for fertilization.
Before talking about the IVF we must know how to get pregnant in the normal state of women, where pregnancy occurs when the man’s sperm meets the woman’s egg in a channel called “fallopian” and this process requires healthy and strong sperm in men, in addition to the presence of a healthy egg is ready for fertilization, in addition to an open path from the woman’s womb to the fallopian tube.
These and other reasons, such as the aging of women or the weakness of the sperm of men, lead to imbalance in the process of insemination making it difficult to happen in women, so the couple resort to use İVF technique, which is to take mature eggs from the woman’s ovary through a simple surgery with full anesthesia, and put in special containers , then they will be fertilized with good sperm taken from the man either by ejaculation or using special devices if the man is unable to do so, and must provide 10 to 100 thousand sperm per egg.
Each egg is then identified by one sperm to be fertilized. After fertilization, the fertilized egg is kept in a special tube. As the cells in the fertilized eggs divide and become embryos, people who work at the lab monitor the progress. About 3-5 days after the egg retrieval, 1 or more embryos are put into the uterus (this is called embryo transfer). The doctor slides a thin tube through the cervix into the uterus, and inserts the embryo directly into the uterus through the tube.
What are the steps before the operation?
Before starting the process, the woman will undergo an ovarian reserve test, by taking a blood sample and testing her ovarian stimulating hormone to determine the size and quality of her ovary.
The doctor then examines the woman’s uterus through ultrasound, to create a complete picture of the uterus. In order to detect the health of the uterus and help the doctor to determine the best way to implant embryos, the man also needs to test the sperm by analyzing in the laboratory to find out the size and shape as well as to to know If the sperm are weak or dead.
Before starting the attempt, women should take some supplements such as zinc, folic acid, aspirin and walking to activate blood circulation and to lose weight. Also it is best to stay away from junk food which contain harmful preservatives in addition to avoide some harmful foods prescribed by the doctor and reduce caffeinated beverages (tea and coffee) and drink more water.
What are the instructions after the operation?
After the operation, the woman is given some necessary instructions that must be followed for two weeks, then she comes to take a blood pregnancy test to determine the results of the operation.
But in general after the operation should stay away from heavy effort, exercises and carrying heavy things as well as avoid food that lead to constipation and stop smoking, also she must avoid intimacy and medical drugs in general without consulting the doctor.
What is the duration of the insemination and does it require a surgery?
It does not require surgery, but the eggs are withdrawn through the vagina using ultrasound and a fine needle, under the influence of a general anesthesia without any surgical intervention therefore she can go home after few hours. This process may cause minor pain in some cases but it can be treated with some simple painkillers.
The woman comes back after days to return the embryos to the uterus and this does not need any general anesthesia and she can leave the hospital after three or four hours. Traveling also is not recommended after the transfer of embryos except for close distances. As for travel by air preferably could be after 24 hours of the transfer.
What is the success rate of the operation and how many time should be repeated?
Some couples are afraid to resort to this procedure, but there are many experiences that have succeeded during the past years because of the advancement of medicine and technology significantly, with a success rate of 60%.
As for the number of insemination, there is no specific number, but it depends on the economic circumstances of the patients and the psychological situation, in addition to the possibility of women exposed to some symptoms due to the activation of the ovaries, such as increased response to excessive stimulants and sometimes forming of ovarian cysts.
Is IVF normal or are there health problems?
Science has not yet proven any harm or health problems of the IVF, but on the contrary, IVF baby is a 100% natural baby becausete te IVF process does not differ from the natural process of insemination, also the period of IVF fertilization does not exceed five days, then the baby is returned to the uterus for the rest of nine months to give birth as a normal baby. Where studies have shown that there is no deformity of the IVF baby.
Can the gender of the fetus be selected using assisted fertilization?
There are two ways of selecting the gender of the fetus using assisted fertilization.
The first one is microscopic immunization with genetically examined embryos to determine their gender before being returned to the uterus. The second method is to separate the male sperm from the feminine then perform microscopic insemination.
What causes the operation to fail?
There are many factors that play an important role in the success or failure of IVF. For example success rate of the operation decreases as the number of transplanted eggs is fewer.
If four embryos are transferred, the success rate is up to 40% and if three embryos are transferred, the success rate reaches 35%.
An important factor is the age of the woman, as the chance of success of the insemination increases as the mother is younger, since increasing the age of the mother over 41 years reduces the success rate of the operation.
In addition, the inner lining of the uterus (The endometrium), it responds to the body’s hormones and prepares accordingly to receive pregnancy, but sometimes it is so weak that it is difficult to the fetus to adhere to it .
The condition of the fetus also plays a role in the failure of the operation, as well as when the fertilized egg is transferred to the mother’s womb before it grows appropriately, Furthermore, some embryos will not survive until the time is right to implant them into the mother’s womb.
There are other factors which could affect the operation badly like alcohol and smoking, high-caffeinated beverages, or use of certain medications. Obesity also reduces the success rate of the IVF. So it is important to follow a healthy lifestyle to increase the chance of success.
Why choose Turkey for IVF?
Turkey is an attractive destination for patients looking for IVF, due to the quality of medical services and relatively low costs. IVF clinics are usually located within Turkey in major cities, especially Istanbul and Izmir.
Medical centers in Turkey provide a good care service , most of which are licensed by the Turkish Ministry of Health which provided funding for IVF centers in 2005 and 2006, leading to increasing in medical centers where most doctors speak English or other European languages. SAFAR United also helps accompanying the patient and assisting in the translation.