In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is a technology that allows sperm to fertilise an egg in a controlled environment outside the female’s body.
The fertilized egg is then transferred into the woman’s body and continues its natural growth.
Despite its numerous successes, there are some cases where IVF fails to help a woman conceive
If the first IVF fails, the cause of failure can be address in the second try to avoid the likelihood of a recurrence.
What causes IVF to fail?
In many cases there is more than one cause for a failed IVF. The specialists will look at the pictures and data of the embryo and score the growth rate.
When the causes are found, they will form a plan to prevent a recurrence with the family.
Some of the causes are unavoidable, such as the mother’s age, but the lab specialist will address the other causes that can be remedied.
The most important requirements for a successful IVF are a healthy egg, functioning sperm and a capable uterus that can nurture the growth of your baby.
1. Egg abnormalities
Egg abnormalities are often caused when the cell divides and the chromosomes are not replicated properly.
This can lead to breakage that results in an abnormal distribution of chromosomes and therefore, an abnormal embryo. This happens more often as a woman ages.
2. Abnormal sperm
Abnormal sperm are less common than an abnormal egg, but when sperm have an abnormality, the degree of chromosomal abnormalities is far greater.
This results in unfit sperm that cannot fertilise an egg.
3. Embryo selection method
The egg (embryo) that gets transferred into a woman’s body is selected by a specialist.
There are three criteria to choose the embryo: cell stage, embryo grade and the rate of cell division.
It is difficult to make the perfect choice for the best embryo, as the specialist can only depend on lab studies and make an educated guess on the best embryo.
4. IVF lab factors
The lab where embryos are raised is a highly controlled environment.
The lab specialists need to carefully control the oxygen concentration, carbon dioxide concentration, humidity, pH, temperature and light among many other factors.
A small change in any of these critical factors can lead to the death of the embryo.
What is the success rate of the second IVF?
After a failed IVF, the first thing to do is to review the previous process and learn what caused the failure.
From these findings, a successful second IVF is possible. Factors affecting the success rate of the IVF include:
● The female’s age
● Egg and sperm quality
● Egg and sperm quantity
● IVF procedure quality
● IVF lab quality
● The lab specialists’ skills
● Available equipment
● The cause of your infertility
● The condition of your uterus
● Embryo growth rates
● Genetic and chromosomal competence of the embryo
The success rate of the second IVF is only slightly lower when compared to the first IVF.
So with the proper conditions, there is a good chance of success.
The doctors and specialists will take the findings and results from the first attempt into consideration to maximise the success rate of the second try.
This article first appeared in Hello Doktor. The Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.