Most clinicians now believe that transferring better-developed embryos i.e. those that have reached the blastocyst stage makes pregnancy more likely. Under the microscope, a blastocyst is markedly different to a day-3 embryo.
Transferring blastocysts can make things more straightforward for implantation. In non-IVF reproduction, a day-2 embryo (usually comprising four cells) will still be rolling down the fallopian tube towards the uterus. Putting a blastocyst directly into the womb on day five or six is an easier prospect for the now highly receptive uterus. Also, genetic testing such as PGD is more accurately carried out on blastocysts.
The key point about blastocysts is that multiple births are less common than with younger transfers. The transfer of one good-quality blastocyst is often recommended. In the past, clinics might transfer up to four day-3 embryos and hope for the best. Blastocysts allow for more informed choices and better control over outcomes. Speaking of which, it’s time to work out your IVF due date!
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In cycles of in vitro fertilization (IVF), it is routine to stimulate the female’s ovaries to produce multiple eggs to use for fertilization. In many cases, we obtain more than one good embryo to consider for transfer to the uterus. The availability of multiple good embryos allows us to grade them and then choose the best for transfer. It also brings up a common dilemma.
The urge to transfer two embryos is sometimes based on the subtle fear that the embryos will somehow be wasted. Embryos not transferred can remain frozen, and frozen embryos can remain viable for 20 years or more.
The intended parents often have the freedom to choose whether to transfer one or two embryos. But they should not make this decision lightly or naively. They should make this decision only after carefully considering the risks to infants and mother, their desire for multiple children, their finances and their clinic’s implantation rate.
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In order to extract and fertilize the eggs during IVF, doctors generally follow the same process every time. Once fertilization has occurred, there are a few different options available for embryo transfer:
Fresh embryo transfer: Once eggs have been fertilized; they are cultured for 1-2 days. The best embryos are chosen to transfer directly to the woman’s uterus.
Frozen embryo transfer: Any healthy embryos that were not used in the first transfer can be frozen and stored for future use. These can be thawed and transferred to the uterus.
Blastocyst embryo transfer: If many healthy embryos develop after the fertilization, it is common to wait to see if the embryos develop into blastocysts., blastocyst embryo transfer has a higher success rate than the standard embryo transfer on day 3. However, another recent study suggests that it may pose risks later in pregnancy and should not always be recommended.
Assisted hatching (AH): the process of assisted hatching weakening the outer layer of the embryo before it is transferred to the uterus does not improve pregnancy and implantation rates in women who are having fresh embryos transferred. The researchers noted, however, that women having frozen embryos implanted do benefit from having their embryos treated in this way.
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The rate of success for embryo transfers may vary based on the transfer method used. There is no statistical difference between using fresh and frozen embryos. Embryo transfers using fresh embryos had a 23 percent pregnancy rate, whereas frozen embryos had an 18 percent pregnancy rate.
The study showed that frozen embryos could also be used for additional embryo transfers where fresh embryos could not. If the chance for pregnancy is low, doctors may consider freezing additional embryos for a second attempt at embryo transfer at a later date. Individual success rates can vary and may depend upon the cause of infertility, ethnic backgrounds, and genetic disorders.
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Once the blastocyst has hatched out of its shell, the actual attachment and invasion of embryonic cells begins within one day.
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The “two weeks wait” starts just after the embryo is transplanted in women uterus. The embryo transfer procedure is a stressful yet exciting milestone in their fertility treatment journey for every woman. This is the time to nurture yourself, don’t taking the stress of the outcome from the very first day. Sit back, Relax and Laugh. When you are laughing you are far away from stress, and this all that you need. Find your own way to live stress-free as you know what works best for you.
Lying on the bed all the time in the name of bed-rest is something not to do after embryo transfer. Bed rest cannot improve your chances of pregnancy after embryo transfer, which might make worst. Take care of yourself, take rest, take plenty of sleep and don’t do anything that you don’t want to do. You can continue your daily routine as you used to and can also start going office. Listen to your body; take a day off if you want, cuddle up on the couch and watch your favorite series. Also, if you feel anxious at home and want to move around, go for a walk.
What to eat after the embryo transfer? Well, eat like you are pregnant already. Instead of listening to what others eat after their embryo transfer focus on your balanced and healthy diet. There is no “miracle food” Make your nutritionally balanced diet including fruits, vegetables, proteins, fibers, carbs. Also check on with your doctor regarding Vitamins, folic acid and other supplements you should take. Needless to say, that you should avoid all harmful substances like alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine.
Continue your supportive medications as instructed by your doctor. Never avoid a single medicine prescribed. These medicines help to keep your embryo alive and make your uterus environment optimal. Create a chart of all the medicines and complete your dose.
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Don’t restrict yourself from your routine activities but lifting heavy weight post embryo transfer is not a good idea. There is no a strict measure of how much to lift and twist but avoiding heavy weight and rigorous exercise should be avoided. Your ovaries are likely still enlarged and tender at this point and need to be protected, so a big NO to hard work out.
Avoid heat completely. Hot baths, hot yoga, sauna, heating pads or anything that can raise the temperature of your uterus and should be strictly avoided after embryo transfer.
No IVF cycle guarantee pregnancy so you should keep yourself ready for all possible circumstances after the two weeks wait. This wait can make or break and you can’t deny this. But you should follow the above tips to keep your pregnancy chances higher after embryo transfer.
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