What is IVF, and why is it used?

IVF is an abbreviation of In Vitro Fertilisation, which is known as assisted reproductive technology (ART). This medical technique is used by couples to conceive a baby. These couples are unable to conceive a baby naturally due to their unexplained infertility. Many reasons lead couples to use this method to get pregnant. This includes male infertility caused by low sperm count and motility. Women with ovulation disorders, damaged or blocked Fallopian tubes, and genetic disorders may also require IVF services to have a baby. In this method, the eggs of the woman and the sperm of a man are collected and combined in a laboratory dish. After that, the embryos are injected into the uterus of a woman. IVF is used for baby gender selection as well. 

Effects of IVF on women

The IVF procedure does not pose major risks usually, but as we all know, medicine and treatments always come with a certain level of risk and often cause side effects. After the procedure, it is not usually difficult for women to return to their regular routine. Still, not every woman has a similar experience, and every woman faces different conditions going through this procedure. After the procedure, some women experience passing clear fluid or blood in small amounts. Women can also experience constipation, breast tenderness, mild cramping, low mood and bloating.

The use of injectable fertility drugs like HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), which is used to induce ovulation, can lead to swollen and painful ovaries, and this condition is known as ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. In this situation, women may suffer from abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhoea and boating. These symptoms of ovarian hyperactive stimulation syndrome will last for several weeks even if you get pregnant. Hyperstimulation syndrome symptoms can get very severe in which women face rapid weight loss and difficulty in breathing, but the occurrence of this situation is very rare. 

The ratio of miscarriage in women who conceived using the IVF method is almost equal to women who conceive it naturally. However, the rate of miscarriage can be increased with maternal age, as it can become more complicated. In the case of IVF, statistics indicate parents are more likely to have a boy. Choosing the gender of your baby can be done through IVF gender selection processes.

During the egg retrieval procedure, the needle can cause damage to the bladder, bowel all the blood vessels of women, which can lead to bleeding. This is very risky and can cause complications for women. Previous studies have shown that the use of the IVF method to conceive a baby can be risky for women as it can cause ovarian tumours, abdominal, breast or cervical cancer. These misconceptions have now been denied, and IVF does not increase the risk of cancer. During pregnancy, women may face many health issues like decreased urinary frequency, severe stomach pain and bloating, weight loss or gain, fitness issues, nausea, vomiting, just to name a few. 

Along with physical health issues, women who are going through the IVF procedure can face severe issues of mental health as well. IVF can cause high levels of stress and even depression. Women can have feelings of shame, anger and emotional breakdowns because of their hormones and inability to conceive. 

The situation can become more depressing for couples if there are many failed cycles. They may also have financial concerns as IVF can be very expensive. It can also affect their social life and relationships with people because they may not be willing to share their experiences and worries due to feelings of shame. Couples who are not successful during the IVF process can experience serious trauma. In this situation, they need special counselling to overcome it.