A Beginner's Guide to IVF

Have you been trying to get pregnant, but you or your partner have diagnosed or unexplained infertility? While most couples don't start with IVF as a solution for the inability to conceive, you may have found that this is your best option for conceiving a child. 

You probably have a lot of questions. Experienced infertility and reproductive medicine specialist Andrew L. Loucopoulos, MD, PhD, provides assisted reproductive technology in the form of IVF at his practice in New York City, on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.  

How does IVF work? 

IVF, or In-vitro fertilization, is a complex form of assisted reproduction that refers to the process of taking eggs and fertilizing them with sperm before transplanting the embryo into the patient’s womb. Your resulting embryos can also be frozen until a later date. IVF can also be performed with donor eggs, sperm, or embryos. 

In-vitro fertilization begins with mature eggs. The female patient or the donor is given fertility medication to encourage multiple eggs to be released. An ultrasound will determine when the eggs are mature, and then they will be removed during a small, laparoscopic surgery. 

Then, the male patient or donor must provide sperm (or it can be obtained from a sperm bank.) The sperm is injected into the egg in a laboratory setting. If fertilization is successful, your resulting embryo is either frozen or transplanted into the uterus, resulting in a viable pregnancy.

When might IVF be necessary?

IVF therapy isn’t right for all couples, and you might be able to conceive using alternative therapies. However, 5% of couples choose IVF as a proven infertility treatment option. Certain fertility or reproductive issues may be leading you to seek out IVF, including: 

What needs to be considered before IVF? 

Deciding to seek out and go through IVF fertilization is a big decision, and there are many factors you should consider. You should discuss with Dr. Loucopoulos certain critical aspects of IVF and how you plan on dealing with them. For example, you’ll need to decide what you plan to do with unused embryos, and you’ll need to discuss with your partner any stress-related or financial issues. You should also discuss the risks of IVF and the possibility of implantation failure, nonviable embryos, or miscarriage.

Not all candidates for IVF end up going through the process and not all attempts at IVF succeed. All couples should consider these issues before deciding on IVF therapy. However, an experienced reproductive specialist like Dr. Loucopoulos can help couples conceive and carry a pregnancy to term. 

Are you ready to discuss IVF? Call our office at 917-341-5464 or book a consultation online today.

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