In vitro fertilization or IVF is one of the assisted reproductive technologies (ART) that help people conceive and get pregnant. IVF is one of the most common fertility technologies that has caused more than 8 million babies to be born throughout the world. In this process, sperm and egg are extracted from the body and are artificially combined in a laboratory dish to form the embryos. The embryo(s) are then transferred to the uterus for hatching and starting the pregnancy.
IVF is used due to many reasons that can cause infertility such as damaged or blocked fallopian tubes. But the main question that comes to the mind of people while struggling with infertility is what the advantages and disadvantages of IVF are. Stay with us until the end of this article to find out the pros and cons of in vitro fertilization and how effective this technology can be in infertility treatment
Why do people undergo IVF?
IVF has helped many couples conceive and people turn to IVF for many reasons. The most common reasons for undergoing in vitro fertilization are:
- Absent or blocked fallopian tubes
- Severe male infertility
- Old ages
- Uterine fibroids
- Tubal removal
- Ovulation disorders
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Low sperm production or function
- Using donor eggs, sperm, or donor embryos
- Unexplained infertility
- Chromosomal abnormality
- Inherited genetic disease
- Same-sex couples
- Preserving fertility before cancer chemotherapy
- Gender selection through IVF+PGD
Advantages of IVF
The IVF process has many advantages for those who are struggling with infertility. But What are the advantages of IVF treatment?
- It can help those who cannot conceive naturally: people struggling with infertility can take advantage of IVF. The reason for infertility can be blocked fallopian tubes, ovulatory disorder, pelvic adhesions, low quality of egg and sperm, endometriosis, low ovarian reserve, low sperm count or absence of sperm, and sexual dysfunction. IVF can help couples diagnose and solve their infertility problem and have a baby.
- It will make diagnosis easier: sometimes couples keep trying to conceive naturally for a long time and fail without knowing the specific reason behind their infertility. By visiting an IVF physician, the problem that leads to infertility can be found, and based on that proper treatment will be offered. Assisted reproductive technologies can help couples conceive easier, and fulfill their dream of having a baby.
- It has a safe history: in vitro fertilization has been used for a very long time now and fertility centers have used the best techniques in order to help pregnancy happen. There is a history of many successful IVF cases that have turned into positive pregnancies and safe deliveries. TebMedTourism physicians make sure that each patient receives a customized treatment plan to get the desired result.
- Screening for inherited diseases: through IVF, physicians can check embryos and find out if they are healthy and of a high quality. They can check embryos for any disorders by running pre-implantation genetic testing (PGT or PGS) and transferring only healthy embryos to the uterus of the woman. In this way, physicians can make sure that the child who will be born is not going to suffer from disorders such as down syndrome or Duchenne muscular dystrophy. PGS is available in TebMedTourism fertility centers.
- Gender selection: the only scientific and proven way to select the sex of the baby is through IVF. In this way, when the embryos are formed in a laboratory and usually after 3 days, the embryologist takes single-cell biopsies from each embryo to examine them and detect the male and female embryos. Through this technology which is called PGD, the sex of the embryos is identified and will be transferred to the uterus based on the parents’ choice.
- Helps treat premature ovarian failure: if a patient is suffering from premature ovarian failure, a physician can reduce the symptoms with hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Some medications can stimulate the growth of eggs, however, it still might be difficult to get pregnant for those with premature ovarian failure. Therefore, using donor eggs and conceiving through IVF might be recommended.
- Helping patients with low ovarian reserve: patients who have low ovarian reserve due to aging might have difficulty getting pregnant naturally. IVF can be a good option for older patients whether they want to use their own eggs or donor eggs. IVF can also help those who are willing to have a baby through surrogacy.
- Unused embryos can be kept for future use or be donated: in the IVF process, there will usually be more than one embryo formed which can be frozen and kept for future use. With the permission of the biological parents, the extra embryos can also be donated to help other people who cannot conceive.
Disadvantages of IVF
What problems can IVF cause? This can be a question of those who want to go through IVF. Besides the advantages that the IVF process bears, there are some disadvantages involved:
- The IVF cycle might fail: the first disadvantage of this technology is that IVF success is not guaranteed and several cycles might be needed before a successful pregnancy leading to a live birth happens. The number of needed cycles can vary among women of different ages and conditions. It is very important that people have a realistic view of the success rate of IVF( increase your chances of IVF success ).
- Some risks and side effects can be involved: just like any medical procedure, IVF can have some side effects and risks involved. The most important risk of IVF is a severe ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome (OHSS). By taking fewer or no drugs in natural or mild IVF cycles, the risk of OHSS will noticeably decrease or be eliminated. Infection, anesthetic risks, and hemorrhage are among the other risks of in vitro fertilization.
- Multiple Pregnancy: in the IVF cycle, more than one embryo could be transferred to the uterus which increases the chance of multiple pregnancies. Around 20 to 30 percent of IVF pregnancies turn into multiple pregnancies and they might have potential health risks to both mother and baby. Premature labour, miscarriage, need for C-section, multiple pregnancies, stillbirth, and baby’s health problems can have increased risks when an IVF cycle is done. By transferring a single embryo, the risks of multiple pregnancies can be avoided.
- Increased chance of ectopic pregnancy: when IVF treatment is chosen, the risk of ectopic pregnancy slightly increases, particularly in women who have preexisting fallopian tube issues.
- High cost: IVF treatment is often an expensive procedure that might be difficult to afford. The cost of medication, ultrasounds, blood tests, and embryo transfer are all parts of this procedure that can increase every day and make it difficult to handle. However, TebMedTourism has made this process highly affordable for patients from overseas so that they do not need to worry about the costs and they can focus on their treatment Related articles: cheapest country for ivf
- Emotional Toll: going through IVF can be a stressful experience that is both physically and emotionally demanding. Both partners should deal with the emotional difficulties and they may feel that not everyone understands why they need to undergo IVF. TebMedTourism tries to minimize the stress level by choosing a short IVF protocol and supporting the clients emotionally.
- Concerns about ethical issues: in an IVF cycle, there might be several embryos formed and get ready to be transferred ( IVF in Islam ). However, some people might not like the idea of choosing some of the embryos and discarding others. We recommend you consider this subject in advance and think about the decision that you are comfortable with. You can consider freezing eggs and not fertilizing them, freezing the extra embryos for future use, or donating them to couples who are infertile and need embryos.
Bottom Line on the advantages and disadvantages of IVF
It is now more than 30 years that IVF procedures are being performed and thanks to this technology, millions of test tube baby have been born. During these years, fertility specialists have tried to enhance the success rate of this assisted fertility treatment and lower the risks. TebMedTourism as a healthcare facilitator specializing in infertility treatment with long years of experience will do its best to get parents the desired result and extend their families.
Of course, each couple is different and needs a customized treatment plan. For this aim, you will need a fertility expert who evaluates the medical records of the couple and plan the best treatment plan based on the couple’s need. Some couples might even require a combination of treatments.
For instance, the fertility expert might notice that you need to use donor eggs to form high-quality embryos (IVF + egg donation). You might need embryo screening to avoid passing on a genetic disorder (IVF + PGS), or you might need a surrogate to carry your baby due to uterus’s inability to carry a fetus. Fortunately, almost all the assisted reproductive technologies including the mentioned services plus ICSI, IUI, sex selection, embryo donation, thawing, etc. are legally practiced in Iran through TebMedTourism with the most amazingly affordable costs. For consulting with our doctors without charge, you can contact us 24/7.