All You Need to Know About IVF


In Vitro Fertilization, that’s what the acronym IVF stands for and today we will be looking at this topic from different angles so that if you are considering it and wish to have an overview on the procedure, the process and where it is possible to do it around the world.

IVF meaning

IVF is THE assisted reproductive technology, a procedure that can done in different ways. It can be done in different ways:

  • one type of IVF is done by using your own eggs and your partner’s sperm

In this procedure there are a number of steps involved. Before the actual procedure the woman may have to take fertility drugs, often dispensed as daily injections, so that the production of multiple eggs is stimulated.

This is because the next step of the IVF procedure is to collect at least 8 up to 10 eggs which are subsequently collected and then mixed with the sperm.

They are left incubating so that the eggs will fertilise and start forming embryos.

Another important step of the IVF procedure is that even after the eggs are collected the woman takes fertility drugs so that her womb has all the necessary lining in order to carry the implanted embryos.

  • another type of IVF may involve eggs, sperm or embryos from a known or anonymous donor
  • finally there is an IVF procedure which involves a gestational carrier, a woman who has an embryo implanted in her uterus.


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IVF gender selection

Family balancing or simply wanting to decide the gender of your future baby is a practice some clinic offer. The procedure of gender selection during IVF can be carried out when multiple quality embryos can be identified with different sexes.

A single cell of the embryo is removed in the lab by a procedure called biopsy (using a microscopic glass needle), which doesn’t cause any pain. Only the desired gender embryos are then transferred.


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IVF vs IUI, main differences

Whereas IVF is a procedure in which the fertilising of the eggs is done in the lab, (see IVF meaning above) with the IUI (Intrauterine insemination) the motile sperm is directly inserted in the woman’s uterus. The procedure is performed according to when the woman is ovulating and can be repeated multiple times during ovulation.

IVF side effects

IVF is a medical procedure and involves taking some medications and with these some possible side effects are to be taken into account. They include bloating, headaches and allergic reaction to medicines.


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IVF success rate depends on several factors

  • Age: the highest success rate of IVF is for women under 35, but starting an IVF procedure over the age of 42 and the success rate can lower to only 4 percent.
  • Previous pregnancies: recurrent miscarriages can be another factor of reducing the success rate of live birth following an IVF cycle.
  • The type of fertility issue: on top of male infertility problems impacting on the success rate of IVF, there are other types of fertility issues that can come into play, for example fibroid tumors or ovarian dysfunction
  • Whose eggs: using eggs from younger women can significantly increase IVF success rate, up to 55 %, especially for those women aged over 35 years old.
  • Your health habits: smoking, being overweight and generally speaking an unhealthy type of lifestyle are some factors that can reduce the success of IVF.
  • The clinic you choose: if some clinics take in patients with lower chances of success, others don’t. The best thing to do when choosing a clinic is to check their success rate and the number of patients pregnant with multiples.


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IVF in different countries

IVF in Italy

Unfortunately Italy might be one of the bets places where to see art and take in some healthy sun, but for what concerns IVF it is one of the countries with the harshest laws in Europe. IVF in Italy is restrictive to heterosexual married couples, as a direct reflection of the influence of the Catholic Church. Pope Francis defined IVF as a sin.

IVF popular in Denmark

The fact that in Denmark IVF is state funded greatly contributes to crowning it one of countries where IVF is widely practiced. Not everyone of course qualifies as for parents and get the fundings, for example women of 45 can only access IVF privately.


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