The ultrasound probe makes it possible to see the follicles and the needle makes it possible to suck the contents collected in a tube.
The follicular fluids collected are sent to the laboratory where the biologist checks the number of oocytes obtained. This may be lower than expected, based on the number of follicles removed. This situation is possible since not all the follicles contain an oocyte and the oocytes are sometimes not sufficiently mature. You can go for the minimal stimulation ivf process there.
The pain or discomfort caused by the puncture varies by patient, but is usually bearable. You can still feel a little discomfort. That’s why it’s wise not to schedule more appointments that day. Like any intervention, puncture can also lead to complications that are relatively rare. Bleeding and infection are two possible complications. Recovery time is usually short.
In the laboratory, the biologist then checks the stage of development of each oocyte and keeps only those that are sufficiently mature.
Meanwhile, the male partner provides a semen sample. This sample is cleaned, analyzed to keep only motile spermatozoa. These are put in contact with the oocytes to fertilize them.
- The embryologist can determine within 18 hours if fertilization has occurred.
- The embryologist can determine within 24 to 72 hours if the embryo is developing.
- Depending on the centers, the embryo will be left in “culture” for 2 to 5 days, the goal is to let the embryo develop and divide into several cells.
Replacement (embryo transfer)
After the puncture, the patient must often take medication (oral or vaginal progesterone) to prepare the uterus for replacement of embryos. The transfer of embryos usually takes place between two to five days after fertilization (this varies from one hospital to another). Search with fertility doctors near me and you will find the solutions perfectly.
In the laboratory, the biologist classifies embryos according to their quality and their morphological appearance according to very specific criteria.
It is clear that a good quality embryo is theoretically more likely to develop. However, some embryos of inferior quality at the beginning end up giving a pregnancy.
In rare cases, the biologist will perform an analysis of the genetic material of an embryo before its transfer (PGD: preimplantation diagnostic)
The best embryo is transferred by catheter into the uterine cavity.
The replacement of several embryos entails an increased risk of multiple pregnancies. In order to avoid a multiple pregnancy always riskier, the Belgian law imposes a very strict embryo transfer scheme according to the age of the woman, the quality of the embryos and the number of IVF tests already carried out. .
It should be noted that more and more fertility centers are practicing a replacement policy on the fifth day (blastotocyst stage). Embryologists can then better determine and select the best quality embryos. All embryos that begin the fertilization process do not develop into a blastocyst. On average, 40 to 50% of fertilized embryos develop into blastocysts.
Frozen embryos ( cryopreservation )
Embryos of good quality that have not been transferred will be able to be frozen and kept in the laboratory. They will be defrosted later to replace them during a natural cycle. Only embryos of good quality can survive defrosting, which is why the biologist will only keep the best ones. For this purpose, you sign the so-called “freezing contract” with the laboratory that contains all the conditions for preservation. At the beginning of the IVF treatment, if the blood test of 2 partners has shown an infectious disease, no embryo will be frozen (to avoid any contamination).