In Vitro Fertilization

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is one of the most commonly known, and commonly used treatment methods to achieve pregnancy for those individuals suffering from infertility.

What is In Vitro Fertilization

During conception, the egg, which is released from the ovary, is fertilized by a sperm in a female's fallopian tube. Through IVF, the fertilization process occurs in a laboratory, where embryologists can control the implantation of the egg by the sperm. Successfully fertilized eggs are transferred into the uterus where they can further develop.

Is IVF right for you?
IVF treatment has been successful for those suffering from:
  • Unexplained infertility • Male factor infertility • Endometriosis

  • Blocked fallopian tubes or other ovulation problems

  • Women of advancing maternal age

There are six phases of IVF treatment
 
  • Pituitary Suppression • Ovarian Stimulation Phase • Egg Retrieval Phase

  • Fertilization • Embryo Transfer • Luteal Phase & Pregnancy Test

Pituitary Suppression

During the natural menstrual cycle, ovulation is caused by a surge or sudden rise in the level of leutenizing hormone (LH). With IVF, the goal is to have several eggs develop at the same time and prevent them from being released until they reach maturity. To accomplish this, certain medications are introduced at various times during the patient's cycle, which allows us to block ovulation.

Ovarian Stimulation

The patient's response to the drugs are monitored over the next 10 to 12 days, via vaginal ultrasound and blood work. The first session is three or four days after the patient has started injections, and continues at least every other day until she is ready for egg retrieval.

Though the IVF process has proven successful in most cases, it's important to note that up to 10% of patients do not respond to the medications as planned. In this instance, your doctor will let you know whether the treatment should be canceled or converted to an Inter-Uterine Insemination cycle

Egg Retrieval

Once your test results show a number of follicles inside your ovaries have reached a diameter of about 2 cm, the egg retrieval procedure is scheduled and the patient is informed to take an injection of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) to induce the final maturation of her eggs, 34 to 36 hours prior to your appointment.

Once retrieval is complete, the test tubes will be sent to an embryology lab where technicians examine the fluid in the test tubes to identify and remove all eggs.

Some discomfort after the egg retrieval process is normal, and can be relieved with rest, a heating pad or hot water bottle, or pain relievers. Patients who experience pain for more than two days after the procedure are encouraged to contact their physician.

Fertilization

Fertilization of the retrieved eggs occurs a few hours after egg retrieval and may utilize either a fresh sperm sample, which will be produced on the day of the retrieval, or frozen sperm.

In general, a normal sperm sample can result in approximately 70 to 80% of the eggs being fertilized, however, it is important to note that not all eggs collected will be fertilized, or result in a high quality embryo.

Embryo Transfer Phase

Once fertilization is complete, the fertilized egg will be transferred to your uterus three to five days after retrieval, using a transfer catheter. This process is usually pain free and takes only a few minutes. The number of embryos implanted during the procedure will be based on your age and quality of the embryos.

Luteal Phase & Pregnancy Test

After embryo transfer, you are advised to take it easy for the next 24 hours. You may return to work if your job is not physically demanding.

Two weeks after transfer, you will return to the clinic for a pregnancy test. Once a healthy pregnancy has been confirmed via ultrasound, the doctor will discuss prenatal care options with you

Pre-implantation Genetic Screening & Diagnosis Testing

Pre-implantation Genetic Screening and Diagnosis Testing (PGS & PGD) look at embryos for specific genetic diseases that can be transmitted to a child from their parents. Both PGS and PGD have been shown to increase the chances of pregnancy, minimize risk of pregnancy loss, and afford the parents a chance to avoid undesired genetic traits.

PGS screens for an abnormal number of chromosomes, and recommended more often by fertility specialists when discussing infertility due to advanced maternal age, repeated IVF failures, recurring pregnancy losses, or those with a history of genetically abnormal pregnancies.

PGD is used to diagnose a single gene defect in the embryo for couples known to have a single gene mutation, to ensure the child will not have the disease. Most commonly, this group of patients has a 25 to 50% risk of transmitting a significant medical illness to their child.

Based on your medical history, your fertility specialist may discuss this specialized testing with you at the time you are considering undergoing IVF.

Disorders diagnosed by PGS include:
  • Down’s Syndrome (Trisomy 21)
  • Trisomy 18
  • Polyploidies
  • Monosomy 16
Disorders diagnosed by PGD include:
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Muscular Distrophy
  • Thalassemia
  • Tay Sachs
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Hemophilia
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Marfan’s Disease

Our Services

Natural Cycle Monitoring

Natural Cycle Monitoring is the first stage in a patient's fertility care. You arrive at the clinic in the early morning for a Transvaal ultrasoun...

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Augment

AUGMENT℠ has the potential to improve egg health and embryo development which are factors that contribute to IVF success.

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Naturopathic Services

Dr. Irena Bergmann, ND is a Naturopathic Doctor and has been working at First Steps Fertility with Dr. Weisberg’s patients for over 3 years.

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Therapeutic Donor Insemination

Therapeutic Donor Insemination (TDI) is successful and viable pregnancy option for treating severe male factor

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Ovulation Induction

During a normal menstrual cycle, a woman's body usually only produces one mature follicle that results in the ovulation of a single oocyte or egg....

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Egg Freezing

There are many reasons a woman may consider preserving her fertility options for the future, including a decline in fertility, as well as a result of ...

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Intrauterine Insemination

Three out of 10 cases of infertility can be attributed to the male partner, often as a result of immotile sperm, where sperm either do not swim well o...

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Single & Same Sex Couples

Three out of 10 cases of infertility can be attributed to the male partner, often as a result of immotile sperm, where sperm either do not swim well o...

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