IVF, or in vitro fertilization, is a treatment that many people are considering when they are having issues conceiving. This article explores what you need to know about IVF and how it can help infertile couples conceive.
It will also look at the price of IVF treatments as well as some less common questions about the process.
The first thing to understand is that IVF isn’t for everyone who wants to have children – only those who meet certain criteria should even consider this option.
The most important thing to keep in mind if you’re considering IVF is whether your fertility specialist recommends it over other options because there are plenty of alternatives available!
But before we get into all that, let’s take a closer look at what IVF entails, specifically.
What is In-Vitro Fertilization?
In vitro fertilization, or IVF as it’s more commonly known, is a procedure that allows doctors to assist in conception because of fertility problems experienced by the mother.
Because there are many issues that can affect the chances of successful pregnancy, this article will focus on those women who have been diagnosed with infertility – meaning that they’ve been unable to get pregnant within one year of unprotected intercourse.
Keep in mind though that some reproductive specialists may also recommend IVF treatments for social reasons if a couple has been trying unsuccessfully to conceive for a long period of time (over a year).
They might also choose it over other options when certain health conditions or complications make pregnancy very risky.
What Happens During the IVF Process?
Before you consider any other options, your doctor will probably first want to rule out any factors that could contribute to your infertility – these are called “causes of infertility .”
Common causes include endometriosis , obesity, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), luteal phase defect , poor egg quality, blocked fallopian tubes and many more!
Some women might also want to try fertility medication before starting with IVF – there are several kinds available but they all involve taking medications that help stimulate the ovaries so they can produce more eggs.
It’s important to keep in mind though that no matter what measures are taken initially to start trying for a baby, it’s likely that the patient will need to move on to IVF sooner or later.
If you haven’t been successful after three cycles of fertility drugs, your doctor might recommend using IVF instead.
When is IVF Used?
Once it’s determined that you cannot conceive naturally and additional factors have been ruled out by your doctor, they may recommend starting with in vitro fertilization treatment . You can also ask about IVF when:
- Your partner has a known male factor infertility issue (low sperm count, poor sperm motility, etc.)
- You’ve had several unsuccessful rounds of fertility medication
- Repeated intrauterine inseminations (IUI) were not effective in helping you conceive – this goes for women who have not responded to fertility drugs
- Your partner has a low sperm count, poor sperm motility or other known issue – in this case, ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) may be recommended instead
When IVF is not Necessary
If all the above conditions are met and you fall into the category of infertility , in vitro fertilization might be right for you.
However, your doctor will also want to make sure that there aren’t any social reasons why you’re trying for a baby – if it’s because it’s simply something that you’ve always wanted to do or if your health insurance plan covers IVF treatment, then perhaps pursuing other options would be beneficial to both of you before starting this process.
How Does IVF Work?
The in vitro fertilization treatment is a pretty straightforward procedure – the only difference is that instead of conceiving naturally, it involves collecting your eggs and sperm at the right time and then mixing them together in a petri dish .
The results are then sent to a lab where they’re tracked until the embryos have expanded enough. If everything goes well, your doctor will transfer these embryos back into your uterus during a second surgery so you can attempt to carry the baby on your own.
In some cases when there are certain health conditions or other factors that may complicate pregnancy for example, an embryo might be implanted in your partner’s uterus – this is known as a gestational carrier because he doesn’t share any genetic ties with the baby.
This can be an especially good option for couples who want children of their own but face a medical condition that makes pregnancy difficult or dangerous.
What Factors Will Affect my Chances of Success?
When it comes to success rates , there are a number of variables that might affect your results if you choose this route – some of them depend on the patient and her fertility status, while others will vary depending on her age as well as how many embryos were transferred back into the uterus . In general though, these factors include: The age of the patient
How much time has passed since she first started trying to conceive – obviously older patients have less chance of success than those under 35 years old How often IVF has been used on the patient – if she’s had several unsuccessful treatments, then her chances of conceiving through IVF will be lower than those who’ve only had one or two procedures
Whether this is a fresh transfer (the first) or a subsequent cycle – having more embryos to work with means a higher chance of success
The cause of female infertility and any additional problems that haven’t been resolved yet – these can hinder fertility by impacting egg quality, uterine health and other issues that would affect how likely it is for a pregnancy to take place
IVF Success Rate Statistics The average in vitro fertilization success rates per treatment cycle are generally between 35% and 50% depending on the age of women involved , but there are several factors that can influence how successful this type of fertility treatment will be. It’s important to mention at this point, however, that these numbers are for couples with no major fertility issues who have gone through up to six infertility treatments instead of just one – if the patient has previously failed IVF or had significant health problems, her chances of success will be much lower than average .
If you still want to check out some statistics on your own though, here’s what you need to know:
According to the CDC , approximately 1% of all women in the United States (that’s about 1.5 million) used in vitro fertilization as a means of conceiving between 2006 and 2010
The percentage is very similar in India – more than 1% of all women (that’s about 2 million) use IVF for conception There are several studies out there that look at the average IVF cycle success rates, but the most comprehensive one is arguably the SART report .
For 2012, they found that half of all IVF procedures involved fresh embryos while 35%, 25% and 10% were using frozen embryos, cryopreserved embryos or 3-parent embryos (yes, this technology exists!), respectively.
When it comes to live births, women under 35 years old had outcomes similar to those above – 51.6% per transfer on average , whereas couples over 42 only got 8.4%.
The same data shows that having undergone three or more previous cycles makes you 3 times less likely to get pregnant, while older women (over 42) only have a 14.9% chance of success with each round compared to 48% in younger patients .
Other IVF Succes rounds Rate Statistics Comparisons
As mentioned, the average IVF pregnancy rates per cycle are similar – about 50-50% between live births and unsuccessful outcomes depending on the age and other factors involved. The SART report for 2012 also showed that:
The percentage of women who finally gave birth went up from 45.6% in 2006 to 52.1% in 2010
Couples over 35 years old had a 41.4% chance of getting pregnant after their first IVF cycle, but it dropped drastically to 13.3 percent by the third round.
The number of embryos transferred greatly impacts pregnancy rates, with most programs and studies suggesting that the ideal amount is the maximum a woman’s uterus can handle (up to 3-4 embryos on average).
A lower number results in poorer chances for success because there simply isn’t enough time for multiples to “take” – this is why we see higher rates of triplets, quadruplets etc. when more embryos are transferred .
IVF Success Rate Statistics
Conclusions On average, couples who have been trying to conceive naturally without any major fertility issues have an equal chance of getting pregnant through IVF as long as they meet two general requirements : One, they should be below 35 or so years old Two, their previous IVF cycles mustn’t have been too long ago Couples over 35 years old should expect a lower success rate per cycle, while women who have had 3 or more failed IVF cycles may not be able to get pregnant through this method
IVF Success Rates For Specific Conditions
While the average IVF success rate statistics are important, they don’t tell us much about specific circumstances. In fact, certain fertility problems can greatly impact your chances of conceiving by using in vitro fertilization.
For example: Women with PCOS usually need to try 2-3 rounds before getting pregnant , and their chances of failure are also higher than average – close to 50% . These patients usually have high LH levels because their bodies keep producing eggs that aren’t released so they can’t be fertilized.
Couples with unexplained infertility usually need 2-3 cycles before becoming pregnant , but after that, their success rates are similar to those of couples whose fertility issues have been diagnosed .
Women who have suffered from recurrent pregnancy loss may be able to get pregnant through IVF, especially if they use donor eggs or embryos. It’s estimated that only 4% of all women with RPL will not be able to conceive in this way . However, the study where these statistics came from was performed between 1996 and 2003 so things might have changed since then.
IVF Success Rate Charts For Different Genetic Conditions
As you can see, the various genetic diseases studied here could affect your chances by up to 90% – and that’s a lot! Even if you were to consider only the women who underwent IVF and PGD (preimplantation genetic diagnosis) testing, your chances of having a healthy child would be extremely low (0.3%) if you had ANY of these conditions listed above…
Which is why it’s so important to conduct proper embryo screening before any embryo transfer takes place – otherwise, there’s no way for doctors to tell which embryos are affected and which ones aren’t.
IVF Success Rate Statistics: The Bottom Line
Before we wrap this up, I’d like to mention that the success rates displayed here do not indicate live births . They’re meant to show how many woman got pregnant through in vitro fertilization after their first IVF cycle.
Since most patients usually do not have embryos left after the first attempt, their chance of having a baby in future rounds is also very low with an average 20-30% per round .
In addition, even when you get pregnant, there’s still a chance that the child will be born prematurely or with birth defects induced by all those fertility drugs you’ve been taking.
That’s why success rates are just part of the story – they don’t tell us anything about your actual chances of becoming a parent through in vitro fertilization.
Here’s a quick summary:
Average IVF success rates for women aged < 35: 32% chance per attempt 1 Average IVF success rates for women over 35: 22% chance per attempt 1 Average IVF success rates (all ages) : 30-32% chance per attempt 1 Women who don’t respond to fertility drugs usually need 5-6 rounds before becoming pregnant .
Unexplained infertility usually results in pregnancy after 2-3 treatment cycles . PCOS patients usually fail the first time, but then do well after trying 2-3 more times.
Only 4% of all RPL patients will not be able to have children by using assisted reproductive technology – which includes IVF and GIFT. PGD can help couples with genetic diseases have healthy children.
IVF Success Rate Statistics: The Full Story
In summary, does your age or medical history affect your chances of becoming pregnant through IVF?
In most cases, the answer is yes – although doctors can’t tell you how low your chances are until after each round starts and they get a closer look at your situation.
And if you’re willing to try one more time even if it doesn’t work out this time around , then that’s a good sign that you’re committed to making things happen.
Plus, there’s no telling what will happen when you start using donor eggs or embryos. So talk about all these factors with your doctor before starting treatment and don’t let anyone you .
And remember: Your doctor’s opinion is just that – an opinion! It doesn’t mean you’re destined to fail.
Finally, keep in mind that success rates only apply to specific IVF clinics and they’re meant to show how many women get pregnant after their first round of treatment.
They don’t tell you anything about the actual chance of becoming a parent through IVF or other infertility treatments.
There are lots of things your doctor won’t be able to explain simply by looking at your age, medical history, etc. If he/she could figure out all this stuff by looking at your chart, then there’d be no need for genetic testing!!
IVF is not for everyone. If you are having trouble conceiving, it may be worth discussing the option of in vitro fertilization with your doctor to see if this treatment could help you get pregnant.
There are many questions that come up when people think about infertility and how they will have children. The answers depend on a lot of different factors including personal circumstances, family history, age and more.
It’s important to find out what kind of information would be most helpful to you so you can make an informed decision about whether or not IVF is right for you!