Introduction to IVF

Jan 09, 2010 | Fertility Care
I wrote this article as a sort of “IVF for beginners.” Even if you’ve been through IVF before, reading this may help you understand why we do what we do. What is IVF? IVF is a type of treatment that involves taking eggs from a woman’s body, creating embryos with sperm and putting embryos into a woman’s uterus. That sounds kind of complicated, I know. I’m going to break it down in the simplest terms possible. IVF stands for in vitro fertilization. It means fertilization outside of the body or in a controlled environment. In vitro = within the glass (in Latin). Every woman has a set number of eggs that she can potentially ovulate every month. We ovulate 1 and the rest die. You can never use them again. Every woman’s “potential” number of eggs that she can ovulate declines as she ages. This number (more…)

Egg Freezing – is this part of Women’s Liberation?

This is a very controversial topic. Fertility companies (I am one of them) are trying to get the message out there to women that they can freeze their eggs before it’s too late. Now that the average age of first birth in this country is quickly approaching 30, we know that many women who are trying to conceive in their 30s won’t be able to without assistance. Believe it or not, 10% of women in their 30s have ovaries that think that they are in their 40s. What I don’t want the message to be is that if you’ve frozen your eggs in your 20s, you can and should be pressured by society into delaying pregnancy. What if every woman planning to enter a long academic and career path (phD track, MD track, partner track at a lawfirm) as a college graduation present gets an “egg freeze?” Will we be even more prejudiced against women who decide to have babies in med school? The mentality could shift to be, “well, you froze your eggs before you started this path, why aren’t you having a baby in 10 years when your training is completed?” That just isn’t fair. A treatment that’s...

IVF twins – are you at higher risk of delivering prematurely because you went through IVF?

Jan 03, 2010 | Infertility News
Most would think that the answer to the question above should be yes but researchers have recently found that the answer is no - IVF conceived twins are not at higher risk for prematurity compared to spontaneously conceived twins. Millions of healthy IVF offspring have been born which has proven the safety of this medical technique. Researchers have recently reported in the December 2009 edition of Fertility and Sterility, by Weghofer et al, that when you compare women of the same age with the same risk factors that the IVF twin pregnancies don't have a higher chance of delivering prematurely. There are several factors that can increase your chances of delivering prematurely: smoking habits and history of prior preterm birth are just a couple of them. My recommendation: talk to your doctor about the risks associated with twin pregnancies. Ask your doctor what your personal risk factors are and how you will be monitored during the pregnancy. Many doctors like to measure the length of your cervix through the first trimester followed by growth scans (ultrasound to measure the weight of the babies) in the second and third trimester along with monitoring the fetal heart beats and amniotic fluid in...

Physical Activity and Semen parameters

Jan 02, 2010 | Infertility News
Now that it’s January, many of us have made resolutions that include losing weight or being more active. Now that you’ve made this resolution, I want to share with you a recent study done to investigate the effect of different exercise regimens on semen parameters. Infertility docs are used to talking to the female partner about her exercise regimen and how it affects fertility but we now have some evidence to show that men who are very active may have a lower chance of conceiving. The investigators split the study participants into three groups. Group A trained for approximately 3 sessions of 60 minutes per week. Group B trained for 5 sessions of 90 minutes per week and group C trained for 10 sessions of 120 minutes per week. The researchers found that men in group A did not have altered semen parameters but men in Groups B and C did. The most significant finding was that the shape of the sperm (referred to as morphology) was low in groups B and C. What does this mean for you? In order for a sperm to fertilize and egg it needs to be normally shaped. If you have a small amount...

IVF Success Rates

Dec 29, 2009 | Fertility Care
How do you learn about success rates  for IVF programs? Go to this link and you will find  helpful information about success rates for programs in the US. http://www.sart.org/find_frm.html Just wanted to get this helpful info out there - I will let you know more about how to interpret the data later.

Dealing with Miscarriage, What are your choices?

Dec 28, 2009 | Fertility Care
Miscarriages aren’t easy. Having a miscarriage means different things to different people. Having a miscarriage means different things to men and women. When a woman becomes pregnant – she starts imagining kindergarten graduation, her child’s birthday parties, high school graduation, her child’s wedding…..many men don’t realize what a pregnancy really means until they are changing their first diaper. This is a huge over generalization just to show that pregnancy and miscarriage are do not mean the same thing to all of us. There are some men that grieve more than their female partners who are suffering from miscarriage. There are some women who don't grieve at all. Some women grieve as if it’s the death of a living relative. They remember the date they miscarried and remember the date every year and remember the date their child would have been on that day, referring to them by name. The way you choose to grieve during over the loss associated with miscarriage is the right way. Everyone is different. Physicians need to realize that every patient is different as well and some women need longer to cope with the news than others. We grieve differently, and we also want different things...

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