Once a couple decides to go ahead with IVF(In vitro fertilization), the next concern is the success rate and to decide where to do it. As we all know IVF has its limitations and a variety of factors influence the outcome. Some of them are under our control and some of them are not.
IVF Success Rates
The outcome of an IVF cycle depends on the quality of the embryo which in turn depends on the egg quality and the sperm quality. Egg quality is mainly dependent on the age of the woman. As age increases, particularly in the late thirties, the chances of having aneuploid/ abnormal eggs increases. ICSI( intracytoplasmic sperm injection) can overcome most of the sperm-related problems but severely abnormal semen samples can give rise to poor quality embryos, thereby compromising the IVF success rates. Egg numbers are equally important. Studies show that IVF success increases as the number of eggs retrieved increases up to about 15 eggs. Thereafter there is no further increase in the success.
‘Smoking is injurious to health’. This applies to reproductive health as well. Passive smoking is equally harmful, but not many women are aware of this. One survey of female hospital employees found that less than 1 in 4 knew that smoking could hurt their fertility or increase the risk of miscarriage.
Men and women are affected by infertility in different ways.
The process of IVF(In-Vitro-Fertilization) involves the ovarian stimulation with hormones with the intention of retrieving more eggs. The whole idea is to have enough eggs to produce an optimum number of good embryos to transfer and to freeze a few in case the fresh transfer fails. The question here is how many do we actually need? What is the optimum number of eggs needed to achieve a live birth, which in turn is the ultimate aim of IVF?