Medical Assisted Reproduction Methods
- Published: Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Almost 20% of couples in the Western world face infertility problems even after trying for a year. This rate shows an upward trend.
For a healthy couple, the probability of getting pregnant durinc a cycle is 15 to 20%.
In couples that experience problems getting pregnant, 40% is attributed to the female factor, 40% to the male, and the remaining 20% to unexplained causes.
In the process of choosing the right infertility treatment, we need to research the problem in depth, in order to help the couple get the right decision.
Factors that must always be kept in mind are the woman's age and the couple's financial flexibility, since infertility treatments can eventually become costly but also time-consuming.
According to the diagnosis, it is possible to provide different options to the couple.
The simplest of these are:
- Taking medication to regulate or stimulate testicular or ovarian function.
- Taking medication to fight potential infections.
- Treatment of the anatomical problems of the reproductive system by surgery.
- If necessary, follow a combination of surgical and medication therapy.
In the event that the above therapeutic methods do not have the expected results, or if their application is considered unnecessary, then we have to follow different and more complex methods, so-called Medical Assisted Reproduction Techniques. Below we will see in detail what the Medical Assisted Reproduction Methods and their associated techniques are.
- Intrauterine Insemination
With this process, we achieve the optimization of the sperm quality, while removing the sperm plasma, i.e. the non-spermatic cells. This enriched sample is then placed through a soft and delicate catheter in the womb of the woman, thereby removing any natural barriers to the female genital system, and thus making it easier for the fallopian tubes and naturally fertilizing the egg.
We monitor closely the follicular growth with ultrasound, and perform the insemination at a time close to female ovulation, either via ovarian stimulation cycle or during a natural cycle.
- Controlled ovarian stimulation
Our aim in this process is to have more than one female egg available to us. This is because during the IVF process it is likely that some or some of them will not develop properly. Our aim is therefore to have the choice of the best quality embryos and maybe even surplus embryos that we can freeze.
That way, if the process fails or the couple wants a second child, the woman does not need to undergo additional ovarian stimulation.
Women who follow the ovarian stimulation program can continue their daily activities normally, but they spend some time closely monitoring the progress of the treatment with the guidance of the attending physician.
Ocularity is the process of collecting the oocytes developed when we medically stimulate the female ovaries. It usually takes place 32-36 hours after we have injected the chorionic gonadotropin.
The woman must come to the unit without having drunk or eaten anything for at least 8 hours in advance, so that we avoid with the slight nausea that she may experience during sedation. During the ocularity procedure, a guide is attached to the transcillant head of the ultrasound, through which we place and connect a needle with a suction system. Then, the needle is pushed into the ovaries and suck the liquid they contain.
Then an embryologist examines the liquid with a microscope and finds any ova contained in it. After the follicular puncture has been completed, oocyte ends, the woman wakes up and within the next two hours is ready to leave the unit taking the necessary instructions. If we have successful oocytes, the husband is called to give sperm in order for the IVF process to begin.
From that day on, the woman follows a specific treatment in order to prepare the endometrium to accept the fertilized egg.
Fertilization takes place in the laboratory on the day of collection of the semen and ova.
The success of the fertilization is checked the next day and the couple is informed of the result so that the embryo day is scheduled