In general, an IVF cycle consists of a phase where you will suppress your body’s tendency to ovulate with medication such as Lupron, then use a follicle-stimulating medication such as Follitism or Repronex to super-stimulate your ovaries into producing a number of eggs.
When you have a number of mature follicles, you’ll “trigger” with a shot of HcG, and exactly 36 hours from that shot, your doctor will extract them in a retrieval which is usually done under general anesthesia. From there, embryologists will take the mature eggs and fertilize them with sperm. Transfers of the resulting embryos take place either three or five days after the retrieval.
IVF involves a lot of needles. All medication is injected with a few exceptions of the medication being delivered via inhaler where you’ll need to sniff it.
When you begin your follicle-stimulating medications you can expect ultrasounds and blood draws leading up to the day of retrieval. Additionally, as you get closer to the retrieval, you might become a little bloated and uncomfortable from the extra eggs that are developing in your ovaries.
For the retrieval, like any other procedure under general anesthesia you will be advised not to eat or drink anything after a certain amount of time. When the procedure is over you may feel some pain from the egg extraction and/or nausea from the anesthesia.
And because a doctor is surgically removing the egg from your follicles, there is no corpus luteum to generate progesterone. So after the transfer, you might also be required to have someone give you daily progesterone-in-oil (PIO) intramuscular injections.
Although you may need to take it easy after the procedure, most women can resume normal activities the following day. Some side effects after IVF may include:
As with most medical procedures, there are potential risks. More severe symptoms, typically include:
If you experience any of these symptoms above, it is advised that contact your doctor right away.
1. For those who want to naturally conceive later in life, there may be serious challenges.
2. The cost is scary
3. Most medical aids won’t cover you
4. There are no guarantees
5. The process is not for the faint-hearted