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Side Effects of IVF Treatments

Posted by: Smith on November 20th, 2011 no responses.

If you or someone you know are thinking about IVF treatments, you need to know exactly what the treatment encompasses. Specifically, you need to know about the side effects of IVF treatments.

 

Infertility affects millions of women around the globe. New and advanced technological breakthroughs help women become pregnant by in vitro fertilization (IVF). IVF treatments give infertile couples a chance to have a baby that is biologically related to them. Thousands of couples are scouting out infertility and surrogacy clinics abroad for the treatment at a lower cost than in their homeland.  Severe Nausea

 

What is In Vitro Fertilization?

In vitro fertilization is a process by which a woman’s egg is joined or fertilized with a man’s sperm in a laboratory dish. In vitro means “in glass” and is usually carried out in a beaker, test tube, or petri dish.

 

Typically, the egg is fertilized inside the woman’s body. This process is called unassisted contraception.

 

In contrast, IVF is a form of assisted reproductive technology (ART). IVF labs use inverted microscopes to inspect the contents in the laboratory dish. The first successful IVF birth was performed in 1978, and the technology has been widely used ever since.

 

There are five steps to IVF treatment:

  • Stimulation – Women are given fertility drugs to boost their egg production.
  • Egg Retrieval – For the removal of eggs, a surgery called follicular aspiration is performed on the woman.
  • Insemination and Fertilization –A man’s sperm is placed in a laboratory dish with the woman’s egg and stored in a chamber. Insemination is when the sperm and the egg combine. This process normally takes a few hours. The outcome is successful egg fertilization.
  • Embryo Culture – The division of a fertilized egg is called an embryo. Tests are done for a few days to ensure the embryo is safe and healthily growing.
  • Embryo Transfer – The last step in IVF treatment is that the embryo is placed inside the woman’s womb up to five days after fertilization in the laboratory dish.

 

Side Effects of IVF

Generally, few women experience side effects from the actual fertility drug, but the process itself can be uncomfortable and mentally draining. IVF treatment involves frequent blood tests and almost daily injections of hormonal drugs.

 

The initial stage is directed at suppressing the menstrual cycle in order for the doctor to induce ovulation. The woman, at this stage, will go through the typical signs of menopause. During this artificial state of menopause, the woman will have headaches, hot flashes, and mood swings.

 

Some of the IVF side effects are as follows:

Stimulation Side Effects

  • The drugs used to stimulate the ovaries may cause abdominal pain and bloating. Ovarian hyper-fertility drug stimulation syndrome (OHSS) is a result of the ovaries becoming overstimulated.
  • Infertility treatments side effects from drugs can be mild or serious. While mild cases of OHSS are treatable, severe cases can be very dangerous.
  • Symptoms include severe abdominal pain, shortness of breath, dizziness; intense nausea, and rapid weight gain.

 

Egg Retrieval Side Effects

  • A long hollow needle is used to retrieve the eggs.
  • Your fertility doctor will let you know what to expect, but some women experience cramps a few hours after the procedure.
  • If cramping becomes severe or bleeding occurs, seek medical attention.

 

Embryo Transfer Side Effects

  • After the embryo has been transferred to the uterus, cramping may occur. In Vitro Fertilization
  • If cramping becomes severe or bleeding occurs, seek medical attention.

Ectopic Pregnancy

  • This abnormal pregnancy occurs outside of the womb, after the embryo transfer.
  • It is one of the serious side effects of IVF pregnancy.
  • The ectopic pregnancy is potentially life-threatening for the baby and mother, so if symptoms occur seek medical attention immediately.
  • Symptoms include: abnormal vaginal bleeding, amenorrhea, breast tenderness, pain on one side of the stomach or abdomen, severe nauseating and vomiting (as per a write-up on Ectopic Pregnancy: Tubal pregnancy; cervical pregnancy; abdominal pregnancy published in PubMed Health).

However, the side effects of IVF pregnancy should not scare you. The procedure has a decent success rate.

Success rates, however, depend on a variety of factors including the reason for infertility and the woman’s age. According to 2009 Clinic Summary Report by the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technologies, after a woman has undergone IVF, the chance of giving birth to a baby that is alive is as follows:

  • In women under 35 years old – 41 to 42%.
  • In women between 35 and 37 years – 31to 33%.
  • In women between 38 and 40 years- 21to 23%.
  • In women over 41 years -11 to13%.

Anyone thinking of getting infertility treatment should be aware of the side effects of IVF treatments as listed above. Any questions should immediately be brought up to your IVF specialist.

 

Submit the free request quote form on the right for more information on side effects of IVF treatment in India.

 


//ankt