In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is the process of fertilizing an egg outside of the woman’s body – in vitro – within a highly sophisticated laboratory setting. The IVF cycle begins with a course of hormone therapy injections to stimulate the growth of multiple follicles in the woman’s ovaries. The matured egg follicles triggered for ovulation before being retrieved surgically. These eggs are fertilized by combining the egg follicles with sperm in test tubes – or through ICSI – creating several embryos. An agreed to number of quality grade embryos are then transferred via insemination into the woman’s uterus.
Step-by-Step IVF Procedure and Process
- The woman’s natural monthly hormone cycle is suppressed with medication
- Her egg supply is boosted with fertility medication
- The development of her eggs are monitored regularly through ultrasounds and blood tests
- When mature, her eggs are surgically retrieved
- The retrieved eggs are fertilized with prepared sperm in a laboratory setting (in vitro)
- The resulting embryos are monitored for growth and quality
- A quality embryo – or embryos – are transferred to the woman’s uterus for hopeful implantation into her uterine lining
Medications administered in conjunction with IVF have proven to be successful. Fertility drugs are used in the treatment of women with ovulation disorders causing their inability to produce eggs and conceive naturally. Hormonal adjustments through IVF medications are used to stimulate the production of multiple egg follicles and then trigger the release of eggs for surgical retrieval.
Superovulation With Gonadotropins
Superovulation with Gonadotropins are used to stimulate a woman’s ovaries to develop multiple egg follicles.
- Follicle Stimulating Hormones (FSH). This medication stimulates the development and growth of eggs in a woman’s ovaries.
- Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone Antagonist (GnRH antagonist). These medications are used to regulate female hormone responses and may be used in conjunction with FSH medications.
Ovulation Trigger Medication (hCG)
Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG) – commonly known as an ovulation trigger injection – is an IVF medication typically used when the doctor has determined through blood tests and sonograms that your egg follicles have matured and are ready to be released from the ovaries.
Uterine Lining Preparation for Embryo Implantation
Progesterone is produced by the ovaries after a woman ovulates. In the IVF cycle progesterone is produced after the hCG trigger injection. Progesterone is supplemented after the hCG trigger injection via vaginal suppository or intra-muscular injections – or both. Progesterone prepares the development of the woman’s uterine lining for the implantation of the embryo(s) transferred during the IVF cycle.
Marquee IVF Doctor
Dr. Hugh D. Melnick is a reproductive endocrinologist successfully treating patients with hormonal and fertility problems since 1976. In 1983, Dr. Melnick founded Advanced Fertility Services in New York City. Advanced Fertility Services was the City’s first free-standing In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) center.
Today, the center is a renowned NYC reproductive medicine center offering all-encompassing diagnostic and reproductive treatment options for couples struggling with infertility.
Dr. Melnick is available for consultation via Skype. Click the icon below and enter your information – or – call Advanced Fertility Services at 212.369.8700 to schedule your consultation.