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A fertility specialist busts the most common myths around IVF

Published on:1 May 2021, 13:40pm IST
A fertility specialist sheds light on the IVF procedure as well as the myths around it.
Dr Aindri Sanyal
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Observing precautions if you're going through the IVF procedure amidst the Cobid-19 pandemic is of utmost importance. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

The procedure of IVF has a lot of myths and misconceptions around it. Unfortunately, there’s a lack of awareness about the procedure. When a couple is unable to conceive naturally, they should ideally meet up with a fertility expert in order to discuss their medical problems and understand the different treatments available to them. One treatment that has enabled multiple couples to conceive and start a family is IVF.

The would-be mother or the couple planning for a child should be aware of the entire procedure, how it works and have a proper idea of the success rate before stepping into the IVF journey. It is imperative that couples are given proper counselling and guidance on reproductive health before they sign up for the procedure.

IVF is recorded as the most common Assisted Reproductive Technology in today’s time because infertility is an issue that is on the rise globally. First, the cause of infertility needs to be examined. Next, the certified doctor will guide you about the best possible treatment based on your medical details. The procedure takes about 2 to 3 weeks.

Infertility can be really disheartening. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

You do need to understand that the IVF treatment success rate is not 100 per cent. The would-be mother should prepare herself mentally, emotionally and financially before opting for IVF. This procedure is characterised by the facilitation of fertilisation where an egg is united with sperm outside the body, in vitro.

The myths around IVF are plenty and to address those, senior fertility specialist Dr Aindri Sanyal, from Nova IVF Fertility East will be busting these myths:

Does IVF take place naturally?

In the procedure of IVF, experts have tried to replicate the same process in which pregnancy occurs naturally, but outside the body, which is the fertilisation and the growth of the embryo. The process of IVF only acts as a surrogate for the fallopian tube for women in whom it is not functioning. Everything else connected with pregnancy occurs inside the body. The offspring produced via IVF is as natural and as healthy as those who are born otherwise, and the procedure is safe.

Let an embryologist fulfil your dream of parenthood. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Is IVF procedure painful?

IVF involves two weeks of injections to get numerous eggs that can be harvested. That is the only painful part about IVF. Once the eggs are ready, these are collected through a small process known as the egg retrieval procedure, which is done under either anaesthesia or via mild sedation. So, the to-be-mother doesn’t really feel anything. The embryo implantation process (inserting the embryo back into the woman’s womb) that follows is done without any anaesthesia since it is not a very painful procedure.

Does IVF raise the chances of multiple pregnancies?

It is true that the odds of having multiple pregnancies is raised when you opt for IVF treatment. This is because, in most cases, 2 to 3 embryos are put back into the body to increase the chances of conceiving a child. You do need to keep in that these chances are raised by only about 10 per cent. The chances of this can be reduced with a single embryo transfer but this also gets balanced by a 10 per cent decrease in the success rate. One can freeze extra embryos while opting for single embryo transfers.

What about the ability to conceive naturally after IVF?

It is possible to conceive a child even after IVF treatment. There are patients who do pregnant but with difficulty, the first time around and may need an IVF but may be able to conceive naturally the following time. There are possibilities to it because of some of the drastic changes that the body undergoes post-partum.

Postpartum depression is common. Seek help if needed. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
What are the chances of miscarriage and abnormalities in the newborn?

As per several scientific studies, the risk of miscarriage and abnormalities via IVF is no higher than any other natural conception. It is believed that people who have been trying to conceive for several years can raise their chances of having a child by 60 to 70 per cent due to IVF. There’s no doubt that IVF is a safe procedure but the age of the mother does play a significant role in a successful pregnancy.

To sum it up

It is imperative that people planning to start a family should seek advice from a certified fertility specialist on the procedures. There are several misconceptions regarding the IVF procedure but consulting with a certified fertility specialist is of extreme benefit.

Dr Aindri Sanyal Dr Aindri Sanyal

Dr Aindri Sanyal, Senior Fertility Consultant, Nova IVF Fertility East, Kolkata