In vitro fertilization procedure started in humans 25 years ago. IVF may be seen as a hope for couples who have been otherwise unable to establish a pregnancy. It is a complex process and involves many steps which have as a result the insemination and fertilization of eggs in the lab. The embryos resulted are then transferred to the uterus for eventual implantation. Each step of the procedure has its specific risks.
During the IVF procedure the ovaries are stimulated in order to produce more than one egg as they usually produce. This technique is called “superovulation”.
If we have more eggs we will have more fertilized eggs (embryos) for transfer and this way the chance for conception increases.
The medications required to boost egg production are injectable only. Risks associated with these medications include: infection, tenderness, hematoma , and bruising or swelling of the injection spot. The medications administrated include risks such as: hyperstimulation of the ovaries , allergic reactions, the ovaries may not respond to the stimulation and the cancellation of the treatment may be necessary.
Sometimes , during the IVF procedure the ovaries may produce too few or too many eggs after the drug simulation. This may trigger the annulment of the procedure and the stopping of the treatment.
2) OHSS-Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome
When the level of estrogen grows to much and , in order to accomplish final maturation of the eggs , hCG is administrated it can appear complications like:
~ A big amount of fluid can be retained in the abdomen and chest cavity;
~Complications like embolus , stroke caused by formation of blood clots (thrombosis of arteries or veins);
~The ovaries can become very large with the possibility of twisting or rupturing.
The problems described above may require hospitalization if they become too serious.
3) Retrieving the Oocytes
For IVF procedure , the process of eggs collecting is usually performed with transvaginal ultrasound help. Usually this process of egg retrieval takes 20-30 minutes. Risks of oocyte retrieval may include the following:
1. Anesthesia may cause side reactions from the medications used in it’s administration.
2. At the passing of the needle through the vagina towardsthe ovaries it can appear:bleeding, including infection, damage to organs like: the bowel, blood vessels, bladder, ureter, uterus or ovaries, and internal scarring caused by the procedure.