Every couple’s journey to parenthood is unique. Some people may have immediate success with conception, while others may require years of waiting and medical intervention.
If you’ve been having trouble getting pregnant, it’s essential to be aware of the various fertility treatments available to help you start a family.
That’s why we’ve enlisted Dr. Hrishikesh Pai’s help in deciphering the various assisted reproductive techniques available today.
Dr. Hrishikesh Pai and Dr. Nandita Palshetkar are founders and medical directors of Bloom IVF Group.
Bloom IVF Centres is one of Mumbai’s most prestigious IVF clinics. They provide high-quality IVF treatment at a reasonable cost.
Many couples have had children due to infertility treatment at Mumbai’s Bloom IVF centers.
So before discussing the infertility treatments, let’s make sure we understand a few things:
When should you consult a fertility specialist?
When it comes to getting pregnant, getting help for your fertility issues at the right time can make all the difference. But when is it appropriate to do so?
“When not using any protection or contraception, most couples conceive within the first year of trying for a baby,” says Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, the leading infertility specialist from India. Within a year of unprotected intercourse, the remaining women usually become pregnant. If you’ve been trying for more than two years and still haven’t gotten pregnant, you should see a fertility specialist.”
However, the right time varies depending on the couple’s age, mainly if the woman is over 35 and has been trying for a pregnancy for six months or more.
“If there are any known issues, such as low sperm count or a problem with the fallopian tubes, the spouses should pursue fertility treatment as soon as possible,” says Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, the founder of Bloom IVF Group from Mumbai.
Fertility treatments that have been tried and tested and can help you out
When you combine the words’ fertility and treatment, the first thing that comes to mind is IVF. While in-vitro fertilization has shown to be effective, it is not the only option available to couples trying to conceive.
Here are some of the most common infertility treatments used by doctors:
1. IUI (intrauterine insemination)
Artificial insemination, as the name implies, is a painful procedure. Dr. Hrishikesh Pai from Mumbai explains, “Intrauterine insemination is a process in which the woman is stimulated so that one or more eggs develop.” “She has a follicular study to track the development of the follicles, and when the follicle matures, she receives a catalyst injection for last maturation and ovum release,” the excellent IVF specialist adds.
The male companion’s sperm is processed and positioned 36 to 42 hours later into the uterus.
“So essentially the sperm is processed, but the egg doesn’t come out of the body—and fertilization happens inside the body,” he explains, adding that the rate of conception with IUI is one in five in younger and healthy couples. It drops to eight to ten percent for older couples per cycle.
2. IVF (in vitro fertilisation)
IVF, perhaps the most well-known form of assisted reproduction, has been around since the late 1970s. Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, Mumbai’s wonderful infertility specialist, explains what IVF entails: “In IVF, the fertilization of the egg fertilization pens outside the body.” The egg is extracted from the woman’s body, and the sperm is removed from the man.”
IVF uses injectable hormones to cause controlled hyperstimulation of the ovaries, resulting in multiple eggs. “To get about eight to ten eggs, we usually do a mild to moderate stimulation.”
Serial ultrasounds are used to track the growth of ovarian follicles. “A trigger injection is given for final maturation whenever the follicle matures,” Dr. Hrishikesh Pai explains.
The oocytes are extracted from the ovaries with a transvaginal needle beneath ultrasound advice after 36 hours. A semen sample is provided by the male partner, which is processed the same day.
“The sperm and oocyte are incubated in the lab for three to five days, during which time they develop. “After that, one or two embryos are transferred into the female’s womb,” Dr. Hrishikesh Pai explains.
The rest of the embryos can be frozen at -195 degrees for up to five years if they are of good quality.
3. ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection)
ICSI is a relatively uncommon procedure that is used in IVF. ICSI involves infiltrating one sperm into the middle of the egg, rather than putting the egg and sperm in a lab dish and allowing things to occur naturally as in traditional IVF methods.
While the rest of the procedure is the same, ICSI-IVF is best for people who have been trying for a long time, have sperm motility issues, and have had unsuccessful traditional IVF cycles.
Which fertility treatment is best for you: IUI, IVF, or ICSI?
When it comes to infertility, IUI is usually the first line of defense. IUI is less expensive and invasive than other assisted-reproductive techniques, which is why many experts recommend starting with two to three rounds of the procedure before moving on to more advanced techniques.
On the other hand, IUI can be especially beneficial when donor sperm is used.
IVF and ICSI, as time-consuming as they are, tend to produce better results in infertility cases, especially when the couple cannot conceive due to preexisting conditions.
“If a couple has been trying for a long time with no results, then IVF-ICSI is highly recommended,” says Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, the medical director of Bloom IVF centers in Mumbai.
“IVF-ICSI is recommended sooner rather than later in cases where females have subfertilities like adenomyosis or endometriosis, and their male partners have infertility issues as well,” he explains. There’s a reason for it, too. Because she is born with them, a woman’s eggs are as old as she is.
Younger eggs produce better embryos, while older eggs have a lower chance of conceiving. As a result, maternal age impacts the success rate of IVF and ICSI procedures.
Male and female infertility is on the rise all over the world. You can blame it on environmental factors or the age at which couples marry and start planning a family, but getting fertility treatment is critical before it’s too late.
If you have preexisting health or reproductive conditions, are over the age of 35, or have been trying for more than a year, Dr. Hrishikesh Pai recommends seeking help as soon as possible.