There are many people who are wishing to have their own children, but their own bodies are hindering them from doing so. These people are the ones who are most interested in the idea of undergoing an artificial reproductive technology (ART) called in vitro fertilisation or IVF. Here are some of the things one should know about the pros and cons of IVF before pushing through with this reproductive innovation.
The pros and cons of IVF: How does IVF work?
Before knowing the issues surrounding the pros and cons of IVF, one must first understand the procedure that IVF follows to assist in a couple’s reproduction. The aspiring mother gets stimulated to produce more eggs to be harvested that are going to be subjected to fertilisation during the cycle. Her partner or a donor also gets a semen sample to prepare the sperms to be used to fertilise the mature eggs of the woman. Once eggs are fertilised and healthy embryos are developed, they are transferred back to the mother’s uterus to facilitate pregnancy. Two weeks after the implantation, a positive pregnancy test would indicate that the process was a success. If the pregnancy test turns out to be negative, you and your doctor will discuss your next steps about pushing through or finding other ways to get pregnant.
The pros and cons of IVF: The advantages of IVF
The benefits of IVF would definitely be geared towards the infertile couple’s welfare. The main advantage of undergoing IVF is the increased possibility of getting pregnant. Research shows that through IVF, infertile couples who suffer from reproductive problems like blocked fallopian tubes, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, premature ovarian failure, or male infertility (low quality and quantity of sperm) can still procreate and get pregnant.
It is considered more successful than other artificial reproductive technology (ART) procedures like artificial insemination or ovarian induction. The method is more extensive and intricate that is why the possibility of having a successful pregnancy that leads to the birth of a healthy baby is higher.
The health and genetic condition of the child is also ensured with IVF. There are additional procedures done during an IVF cycle that can be performed to ensure that the embryo to be implanted would not have the genes that could cause genetic disorders to the baby.
The pros and cons of IVF: The disadvantages of IVF
This is the part of your patient-doctor discussion about IVF that should be clear to you and your partner. Information about the risks and complications that could happen during your IVF procedure should be clearly elaborated and explained by your fertility expert so that you and your partner are both aware of the consequences that may occur in your quest to have your own child.
IVF is not always successful. The process from the ovarian stimulation up until the transfer of the healthy embryo may be a success. But there are so many other things that can happen during your pregnancy, and miscarriage may not be prevented. In fact, miscarriages have increased when the pregnancy is from IVF.
Multiple pregnancies. Sometimes, the fertility specialist and the couple would decide to implant more than one embryo to increase the chances of getting pregnant. However, this may also increase the chances of having twins or triplets. Having multiple pregnancies may risk the health of both the mother and child, like an increased chance of premature labour, miscarriage, the need for caesarean delivery, stillbirth, and infantile health problems, among others.
IVF treatment is expensive. Getting pregnant the natural way is costly enough, so imagine the expenses that reproduction would incur if you are to undergo in vitro fertilisation. IVF treatment is not cheap, and after paying for the process, from the medication and blood tests, the costs can quickly add up. It is good to have a clear idea of the costs involved before starting the procedure so that you can have your finances in check even before the process.