IVF and the Egg Retrieval Stage
Although it’s a natural human process, reproduction doesn’t occur easily for everyone; nearly a third of all couples fail to conceive within the first year of trying. If you have been unable to get pregnant, then reproductive medicine can help you conceive the bundle of joy you’ve anticipated for so long. As one of the more popular options, in vitro fertilization allows couples to use their own eggs and sperm, or donor eggs and/or donor sperm. If preferable, IVF also allows for a surrogate carrier. At our center for reproductive medicine in Omaha, IVF is performed in several stages, and the egg retrieval stage is one of the most important.
What Is the IVF Process?
During in vivo fertilization, which we also offer, a woman’s eggs are fertilized within her fallopian tubes using a variety of methods. By contrast, in vitro fertilization, or IVF, describes fertilizing the eggs within a laboratory setting. Because the procedure is separated into several different processes, in vitro fertilization can help more couples overcome a wider range of reproductive issues. First, ovulation is stimulated to promote the development of several eggs at the same time. Just before ovulation begins, the eggs are retrieved from the ovaries and fertilized by the father’s or a donor’s supply of sperm. Once they’re ready, the strongest embryos are then transferred to the mother’s womb to be brought to term.
The Vital Role of the Egg Retrieval Stage
Before we retrieve your eggs, you’ll be placed under conscious sedation to help you relax during the procedure. The eggs are removed using an ultrasound probe, which is used to view the reproductive organs, and an extremely fine needle that uses a gentle, controlled amount of suction. Mature eggs can usually be retrieved from both ovaries in about 15 to 20 minutes, though the exact time will vary for each patient.
Before and After Retrieving the Eggs
Typically, egg retrieval occurs around 34 hours after the induction of ovulation, and you’ll likely be advised not to eat or drink anything for up to 8 to 10 hours before undergoing egg retrieval. Afterwards, you’ll remain at our center for a couple of hours of rest and observation before going home. Soreness and minimal discomfort are to be expected, and you should refrain from vigorous activity or soaking in a tub for a recommended amount of time. While you recuperate, our fertility specialists will fertilize and culture the eggs until the embryos are ready for transfer back into your womb.
Is IVF for You?
Though in vitro fertilization is popular, it isn’t the only option we offer, and depending on a number of factors, it may not be the optimal choice for you and your partner. Choosing the right option means assessing the issue that prevents you from conceiving, which may lie with the mother and/or father, or might include medical conditions that have to be taken into consideration before proceeding.
Take the First Step by Scheduling an Appointment
For a comprehensive and personal consultation about your fertility issues and the possibility of overcoming them, contact our Omaha fertility and reproductive medicine specialists today. Our entire team is eager to meet you in person and help you find a comfortable and effective solution to starting your family.