Fertility Treatment Options

The ABCs of ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology)

ABCs of Fertility Treatment

Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) is any kind of help we give a couple in achieving a pregnancy, from simply maximizing a couple's chances of achieving a pregnancy by teaching them to properly time intercourse to using the most sophisticated techniques to help a single sperm fertilize an egg in the laboratory.

Some of the more sophisticated types of infertility treatments can be identified by their acronyms - IVF, eSET, ICSI, PGD.

Options for fertility treatment include:

Fertility Testing and Evaluation

Before any treatment can be properly prescribed, we need to assess the underlying condition causing your infertility. That's why all of our patients start with a complete series of testing and diagnosis procedures.

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Hysterosalpingogram-HSG

A Hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is an X-Ray procedure that assesses the size and shape of the uterine cavity and the patency (opening) of the fallopian tubes by injecting non- or low iodine based (radiopaque) dye into the uterine cavity through the vagina and cervix.

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Intrauterine Insemination-IUI

One of the more popular infertility treatments to increase the numbers of sperm reaching the egg is intrauterine insemination (IUI) with washed sperm.

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IVF (In Vitro Fertilization)

This is the cornerstone in the ART repertoire, where the egg and sperm are combined in the laboratory, incubated, and the resulting embryos are transferred into the woman's uterus.

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ICSI (IntraCytoplasmic Sperm Injection)

This is a variation of IVF in which fertilization is achieved by direct injection of a single sperm into the egg. It is utilized when the male partner has a significant sperm problem, or when IVF is planned and there is another significant concern regarding fertilization.

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AH (Assisted Hatching)

This is an additional variation in IVF in which a small hole is made in the shell surrounding the embryo to facilitate implantation.

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PGD (Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis)

This technique is also a variation of IVF involving removal of a polar body (genetic material next to the maturing egg), or a cell from the dividing embryo for genetic analysis to avoid the transfer of genetically abnormal embryos or embryos carrying a genetic abnormality linked to the sex of the offspring (generally the male).

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Blastocyst Transfer

On average, close to one-half of 4- to 8-cell embryos at day 2 or 3 are chromosomally abnormal. By culturing these embryos for an additional 2 to 3 days, more chromosomally normal embryos will be selected out naturally and develop to the blastocyst (5-day-old) stage in the laboratory.

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Elective Single Embryo Transfer (eSET)

The physicians at Reproductive Partners Medical Group encourage the use of Elective Single Embryo Transfer (eSET), which is often safer than transferring more than one embryo.

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Single Transfer, Safer Pregnancy, Healthy Baby

The advancement of IVF has created the opportunity to pursue this advanced fertility treatment following a protocol that reduces multiple births and their associated risks to both mother and child.

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Egg Donation

For women with premature ovarian failure, poor follicle development, genetic diseases, or chromosomal abnormalities, egg donation offers the chance to delivery a healthy baby.

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Egg freezing

Egg freezing, with subsequent thawing, fertilization and creation of a successful pregnancy is an advancement that has eluded reproductive endocrinologists for the first three decades of in vitro fertilization. The major stumbling block was ice crystal formation that damaged the frozen egg.

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As you can see, many of these procedures are very similar, and some procedures, as defined by certain groups, may overlap. Others may be done in conjunction with IVF.

In order for you to maximize your chance of success using these techniques, it's important that you educate yourself about which procedures might be appropriate for you.

The first page in a new chapter of your personal success story starts with an initial consultation. Click here to schedule a consultation today.