Friday, 1 June 2012

IVF cycle

Moments of truth in an IVF cycle

An IVF cycle is full of uncertainty and suspense, like any other biological system. However, being prepared for these can help you cope better!

Think of an IVF cycle as being a series of hurdles - and you need to cross all these to reach the finish line! While most patients will cross these hurdles with ease in a good IVF clinic, each of these is a “moment of truth ".

•    You should grow many follicles
•    These follicles should mature
•    Your uterine lining should also mature in synch with your follicles
•    Ovulation should not occur before the eggs can be collected
•    Mature eggs must be retrieved by the doctor during the "pick-up"
•    Your sperm must fertilize the eggs ( with IVF or ICSI)
•    The embryos must divide and grow healthily in the IVF lab
•    Your embryos should be transferred by the doctor smoothly into your uterus
•    Your embryos should implant
Think of it as a series of hurdles, all of which have to be cleared, in order to win the race!

As you can see, how well you negotiate these hurdles will depend to some extent on your biology (how good your ovarian reserve is, for example); while others will depend upon the skill of the doctor!

A good clinic will guide you through these moments of truth, and share information with you, so that you can rejoice when things are going well - and be prepared in case things do not go as planned. Unfortunately, as with any biological system, IVF is also full of ups and downs - and the more you know about what is happening - and what is going to happen next, the more easily you'll be able to go through your IVF treatment !

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