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Print Posted on 04/11/2018 in Fertility Treatment Options

10 Amusing Facts About IVF Treatment Cycle – You Will Be Surprised

10 Amusing Facts About IVF Treatment Cycle – You Will Be Surprised

What are your thoughts about IVF? Any ideas? You may consider that it is something Magical. It is something Mysterious. It is something Impossible to Understand Completely. It is something that Does the Wonders. And it really does the wonders. IVF treatment cycle literally involves you in the other reality. And this New Reality is designed for your tiny embryo creation. There are so many Amusing Facts about IVF treatment that you may find your mind lost. Therefore, we have chosen top 10 facts which will surprise you or remind you something essential.

(1) The tiny perfect embryos are made especially [‘DESIGNED’] for you

Fertilization (making the embryos from your oocytes and your husband’s sperm) is possible even in difficult cases. Not always the standard insemination can be used for the oocyte fertilization. The Embryologist will take all the eggs retrieved and toss them in a petri dish with your husband’s sperm and let them do their thing.

Another option is called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), where the Embryologists manually fertilize the eggs with the sperm individually, but it is for extreme cases only. The ICSI procedure is done with the aid of a microscope and fine instruments, one single sperm is taken and injected directly into every mature oocyte.

Indications for ICSI include such cases as the previous semen analysis demonstrating significant abnormalities, in situations where surgical aspiration of sperm from the vas deferens or testicle, or a previous IVF cycle with poor fertilization. You will know the next morning how many of your oocytes have been fertilized correctly. After that, you will be waiting three long days or…more. And then you have to wait. Three long days. Or...more.

On day 3, you get a Day 3 growth report, and it’s the scariest and the most exciting phone call of your life. The phone call from your Embryologist. The embryologist will tell you how many embryos Fair, Good, and Excellent quality are. Can you imagine that? Those ones glittering gorgeous tiny embryo–ladies and handsome embryo–dudes were designed especially for you. All of them are perfect. And all of them are anticipating the time when they will be with you.

(2) Mock embryo transfer increases the chances that your tiny embryo will be accurately placed inside

Embryo transfer is a blind procedure and some difficulties can unexpectedly arise. Therefore, many IVF programmes perform a ‘mock’ embryo transfer. It is done prior to the treatment cycle to determine the most suitable catheter and technique for actual embryo transfer.

In the middle of your cycle, your doctor will do a mock embryo transfer. It is a trial of the actual embryo transfer. The actual embryo transfer requires taking the embryos into a catheter and then transferring them to the uterus via the cervix. This procedure is more complicated than it appears. It’s not enough to just drop those tiny embryos anywhere inside the uterus. There is an ideal area in your uterus where they should be accurately placed.

(3) If you have at least ONE perfect embryo, don’t burst into tears! This ONE tiny embryo loves you and is waiting for you

Most of the embryos may stop their development. And you will feel anger, anxiety, confusion, or even despair. You will feel like a bundle of nerves. You will even burst into tears. And you shouldn’t feel this way. If you have at least ONE perfect embryo, don’t burst into tears! This ONE tiny embryo loves you and is waiting for you!

Even if 6 of your oocytes were fertilized correctly, you know the odds of all 6 of them making it to day 5, may slim to none. If you are lucky, you will have one, and if you are super lucky, you will end up with 2 or 3 of them. Two or three perfect embryos would have meant the chance that maybe, just maybe, one of them would grow to full term. The responsible Embryologist closely monitors the development of the tiny embryos. If the embryos continue their development, then the embryo transfer may be prescheduled. BUT there is still one BUT… If you will be too nervous, the embryo transfer may be cancelled. Give this tiny one embryo the chance. Do not play the scenario ‘It took so long’.

(4) Chromosome abnormalities are excluded

The great challenge for Reproductive Endocrinologists is to correctly identify the most viable embryos and prioritize them for further transfer to the uterus. Especially it should be done in cases when it is vital to exclude the embryos with chromosome abnormalities. And there is a GREAT OPTION for this.

Preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) is currently applied to evaluate the presence of aneuploidies in embryos of couples at risk of occurrence the chromosome abnormalities, for example, advanced maternal age, recurrent miscarriage, recurrent IVF failure or severe male factor.

If your doctor insists on this procedure, do not say ‘NO’. First glance through two next lines. Embryos are prone to chromosomal abnormalities. The consequences of chromosomal abnormalities could cause miscarriage (early pregnancy loss) or severe chromosomal diseases. Have they changed your mind about preimplantation genetic screening?

(5) You will decide how many embryos should be transferred and what should be done with those left

Surely this decision will be based on your doctor’s recommendations. Before the time of the actual embryo transfer, your doctor will review the fertilization results and the development of the embryos. A decision will be made regarding the number of embryos that will be transferred. You will have to sign the papers before the embryo transfer. The questions in these papers vary from clinic to clinic, but there are three most important which remain the same. How many embryos should be transferred? What should be done with those embryos that left? Will you undergo the embryo reduction procedure in case of multiple pregnancy? Or will you try to save all those tiny ones?

You can ask to transfer two, three or even more embryos. But you should understand the risks which will follow your decision. Increasing the number of embryos transferred will increase the chances of pregnancy. But it will also increase the risk of a multiple pregnancy (twins, triplets, etc.). Remaining embryos that are not transferred will be accurately examined. If they are of suitable quality, they may be frozen, stored and transferred in the future. Alternatively, these ‘extra’ embryos can be discarded.

(6) Sexual differentiation occurs before fertilization! 

Thrilled by this news? Yes, the gender is PREDETERMINED. Inspired and nervous? Yes, it can be even chosen. During the embryo development, sexual differentiation occurs BEFORE FERTILIZATION. It is determined by the genetic material contributed by the sperm of the baby’s father.

The father’s genes are responsible for the baby’s gender. Sperm cells [spermatozoa] carry either X or Y sex chromosomes. Every spermatozoon [every father’s sperm cell] carries either X or Y sex chromosome. Given that mother’s cells [oocytes] always have an X sex chromosome, two chromosome variations are possible:

If the father’s spermatozoon carries an X–chromosome the embryo–baby will be ‘XX’ –– an embryo–lady [a girl].

If the father’s spermatozoon carries a Y–chromosome the embryo–baby will be ‘XY’ –– an embryo–dude [a boy].

(7) Gender selection is possible. You may choose ‘an embryo–girl’, ‘an embryo–boy’, two embryos (‘an embryo–girl and an embryo–boy’, or two ‘embryo–girls’, two ‘embryo–boys’)

Wondering is it possible to have the embryo–baby with the desired gender? YES, it is possible. If you would love to choose the gender of your future baby or babies, you have this option. These embryo–babies will be exclusively ‘designed’ for you. If you do want to have ‘an embryo–girl’, ‘an embryo–boy’, two embryos (‘an embryo–girl and an embryo–boy’, or two ‘embryo–girls’, two ‘embryo–boys’, or three ‘embryo–girls’, or two ‘embryo–girls’ and one ‘embryo–boy’, IT IS POSSIBLE.

Amused by these facts? What may be done by the reproductive specialists to ‘DESIGN’ the embryo–baby’s gender? They must know which chromosomes prevail in the sperm. If the sperm sample will contain mostly ‘X’ chromosome spermatozoa, a tiny gorgeous embryo–lady will be waiting for you. If the sperm sample will contain mostly ‘Y’ chromosome spermatozoa, a tiny handsome embryo–dude will be warmly welcomed. And if you want more tiny embryos with the desired gender…They will be cute and beautiful, just make a wish–list ‘WHO’ they should be. Caught the hidden idea?

And if the ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) technique is chosen for fertilization, that means that the ONE single spermatozoon will be INJECTED inside the oocyte. So…They just need the utter accuracy to choose that ONE spermatozoon and to inject it inside the oocyte. And the divine ‘embryo–[insert your version]’ anticipates the ‘romantic date’ with you!

OR… the other intimidating option – to produce the embryos and to ‘glance inside’ their GENETIC CODE to find the one which suits your desires. The technique which is used is called PGD (preimplantation genetic diagnosis). They screen the entire genomes of the embryos for the desired characteristics.

(8) Multiples are so common (getting pregnant with twins, triplets, or even more is common)

Twins, triplets, or YAY…That also may happen, quadruplets, quintuplets, sextuplets, septuplets, octuplets… Fetuses of all shapes and sizes are everywhere. At present, multifetal pregnancies are closely associated with infertility treatment. And (IVF) is responsible for multifetal pregnancies and adverse neonatal outcomes. IVF treatment cycle is designed to stimulate excess follicles and transfer excess embryos to achieve pregnancy. So?

If two or more perfect tiny embryos were transferred into your uterus, you may expect the multiple. But sometimes spontaneous twinning/tripling occurs from fertilization of two separate oocytes [dizygotic twinning] or from a single fertilized oocyte that subsequently divides into two identical structures [monozygotic twinning]. So… it may happen.

(9) Extra–embryos or extra–fetuses MAY VANISH…

Multiple embryo implantation can’t guarantee that absolutely all embryos would develop normally into fetuses. On the contrary, discovering more than one gestational sac before the eighth week should not be considered as definitive because vanishing embryo phenomenon may occur.

Interested and nervous? You shouldn’t feel this way because spontaneous vanishing mainly occurs between 8 and 9 weeks of gestation. Vanishing embryo is a phenomenon, which occurs before the ninth gestational week. The intricacy of this phenomenon can be shown through the percentage: between 10% and 20% of viable twin fetuses disappear. And not only twins are in danger. Embryo vanishing phenomenon was defined as the spontaneous loss of one or more embryos after identifying their heart activity via external ultrasound.

Where do the embryos VANISH? The scientists don’t know yet. They just have some tips what to do. Accurate early ultrasound monitoring is highly recommended to precisely identify the occurrence of a vanished embryo and the time when the vanishing occurred. We do hope that in the nearest future they will REVEAL this Vanishing MYSTERY.

(10) If you can see those tiny heartbeats on the ultrasound screen, your tiny embryo or fetus is alive

You will go through many things before this UNIQUE MOMENT. Your doctor will perform the first external ultrasound to determine how does your little one spend its time inside. It’ll be painful and uncomfortable and terrifying, but you will keep your focus on the black and white screen by your side. And if you can see those tiny heartbeats (that glittering red spot) on the ultrasound screen, your tiny embryo or fetus is with you. Amused? Just curl a smile.

IVF is a new world. The world of hope. The world of miracles. The world of wonders. Never give up. Even the tiny chance may be YOUR CHANCE.

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